An insider reflections on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Via Angry Arab:

''The settlements and the Israeli separation wall are enormous obstacles to a viable two-state solution. But they were put in place by acts of political will. In principle, they can be removed by political decisions. What is uncertain is whether any coalition of forces can be assembled in Israel that can muster the wisdom and courage to undertake this. It would be greatly facilitated if the international community and the media ceased to propagate obfuscations about the nonexistent "peace process." This has become a propaganda term that conceals Israel's continued settlement expansion, the construction of the separation barrier declared illegal by the International Court of Justice and the fact that the Gaza Strip remains under occupation practically and according to international law. These harsh realities and their appalling consequences for the Palestinian people must be confronted. The Bush Administration, which has endorsed very nearly any Israeli outrage against the Palestinians in the name of the "war on terror," is hopeless on this, as on many other Middle East policy questions. The Democratic Party has a poor record on Israeli-Palestinian issues and cannot be considered a serious alternative.

Where, then, is the hope for a peaceful solution to the conflict? I believe that it lies in the young Palestinians, Jewish Israelis and internationals who have been fighting shoulder to shoulder in weekly battles against the Israeli security forces since late 2003 to halt the construction of the separation wall. This struggle has been led by Palestinian villagers in unheralded places like Budrus and Bil'in, organized in the Popular Committee Against the Wall. Although their successes have so far been minor, these actions have demonstrated that trust is built through joint political action and that whether there will eventually be two states or one, coexistence, not separation, is the foundation for peace.''

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Since March 29th 2006