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Slim Chance of Mid-East Peace

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Some say that making the second most hated man in the Muslim world, Tony Blair, the envoy to the region with the highest Muslim population in the world, is like making a former Grand Imperial Dragon of the KKK a liaison to the black community. If Blair sticks to his pro-American roots he will be as much use as Middle East envoy as an indoor wind-farm. Current American policy is, as usual, exactly the same as Israel’s policies for dealing with the Palestinians and Arab states, favouring Abbas’ Fatah and trying to isolate and squash (more popular because they are more militant) Hamas.

Blair brokered the Northern Ireland peace process by realizing that peace would only last if all parties were involved in negotiations.

So if Blair realizes that his pro-Americanism was responsible for his fall from grace, which I think he must, his personality and character dictating that he seek to do well in his new job, should mean he will start going against America and applying the same principles to the Middle East as he did to Northern Ireland.

I hope he does so soon. This week, U.S. foreign secretary Condoleeza Rice has said “there will be a Palestinian state” and there is talk of U.S. President Bush pushing both sides to find an agreement before he leaves office early 2009. Israel’s Prime Minister Olmert said he thought it was necessary to pull out of the West Bank and made Abbas an offer to discuss the principles of a Palestinian state, such as its institutions and government – leaving final status issues such as borders and refugees to the end of negotiations.

This just days after Israel released 250 Fatah prisoners from its jails, was undoubtedly another attempt to bolster support for Abbas’ new emergency cabinet currently controlling the West Bank, but also a possible sign that Israel is realizing the occupation can’t go on forever.

There is much hype about the planned peace conference later this year, scheduled to see all the major players, Abbas, Olmert and leaders of the neighbouring Arab states, everyone except Hamas. Some would ask why Hamas would be needed; if an agreement were reached surely the Palestinians would force Hamas to go along with it?

Fatah have lost all credibility in the eyes of the Palestinian people, the Palestinian people don’t trust Abbas, any agreement would be met with scepticism. Palestinians would think he had betrayed them behind the scenes, in order to reach a favourable deal and line his pockets.

Also, for any deal Israel will need to give up control of the land taken in the 1967 war, Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem, creating a Palestinian state therein. Although a land-swap agreement where Israel gives back some of its land in order to keep Palestinian land where it is thought to be necessary for security or to encompass settlement blocs. Israel agreeing to this will hinge on the Palestinians guaranteeing Israel security. Without Hamas on board they would likely wage a terror campaign throughout the negotiations, as we saw during the Oslo process. This would prevent the Palestinians making any such guarantee.

What’s more, Israel knows that the Palestinians can’t guarantee their security unless all the parties are behind any cease-fire or peace-process. So, their current attempts to prevent Hamas from taking part in any thing democratic or peaceful back-up those that say Israel is trying to prevent peace.

On the bright side, if Blair manages to wangle Hamas and Islamic Jihad a seat at the peace conference table, a Palestinian guarantee of Israeli security can be believed. Obviously Israel won’t trust them but hopefully the international community and Blair will make them give the benefit of the doubt. What’s more if a deal is reached, it will have the trust and support of all Palestinians — who know Hamas won’t sacrifice their rights — making cessation of attacks even more likely.

With Northern Ireland, once thought to be the most intractable conflict, now enjoying peace and prosperity, hopefully Blair can shake off his American-poodles tail and end the world’s truly most-intractable conflict.

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About Liam Bailey

  • http://www.elitebloggers.com Dave Nalle

    Some surprising misconceptions in here.

    First off, you decry the US as the instigator of bad policy in the middle east and the most hated enemy of the people there, yet almost immediately afterwards you point out that the US is the main initators of the effort to create a Palestinian state. There’s a contradiction there.

    This fits well with your contention that “if Blair manages to wangle Hamas and Islamic Jihad a seat at the peace conference table, a Palestinian guarantee of Israeli security can be believed.” These groups have been involved in negotiations before. They have a long and well documented record of NEVER abiding by such agreements. Why should we think that has changed now?

    Dave

  • http://warpages-leejay.blogspot.com Liam Bailey

    Dave:

    First of all I do not decry the U.S. as the instigator of all bad policy, I say that they are guilty of, as usual following Israel’s bad policies. as I have always said, the U.S. takes Israel’s side. That is another reason Blair could be good in his new role… If he splits from the U.S. he will realize that their one-sidedness is the single most detrimental factor in this conflict ever being resolved.

    Now, you want to talk about Hamas and Islamic Jihad breaking their commtitment to peace processes? Give me examples and for every one you give I’ll give you two Israeli actions, or examples of how Israel breaking their committments prompted the Palestinian’s to break their side of the bargain.

    It all comes down to who is gaining from the conflict and who is losing. The Palestinians have lost thousands of civilians, Hamas, Fatah and Islamic Jihad’s family members, neices nephews, children grand-children, to Israel’s hundreds. Israel is gaining land while the Palestinians are losing it. Israel has a state and control over its own borders, exports and more importantly its economy, the Palestinians have control over nothing, not even their own destiny — that’s right Israel controls every aspect of every Palestinian’s life, and always seeks to maintain that control. Meanwhile Israel is getting billions of dollars from the U.S. government, as well as weaponry to secure its “fragile” existence. Fragile as any state sitting on one of the world’s largest nuclear arsenals. Who do you think wants peace most?

  • http://jprepo1.blogspot.com JPRePo1

    i suppose if there were a group of people wholly dedicated to the eradication of my nation, people, and religion, i’d want to control them too

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Those of you interested in what is going on in my neck of the woods will have a longer article than Liam’s to chew on in a day or so.

    Let it stand that anyone who puts any faith at all in Tony Blair accomplishing anything by interfering in our affairs on behalf of the pigs in Washington and Brussels in a fool. That is my only comment on this latest effort by Mr. Bailey.

    I’ll wait till my own piece comes out and comment further from there.

    L’hitraót – au revoir.

  • Franco

    Dave

    Good points and I share the road you are on, but IMO you did not state it strongly enough.

    It’s not a question anymore to even ask if we can believe they will abide by anything together.

  • Franco

    Liam Bailey,

    Anyone fanning a banner for Hamas, without exception, leaves only two (2) possibilities. They are either extremely naive, or they are an Islamic terrorist (and I am not referring to Muslims). There is no other possibility in-between.

    Hamas (and every single person, place, and thing associated with it) has proven far beyond light-years of a reasonable doubt that it has unconditionally and forever lost any credibility towards any peace process with Israel.

    They themselves have willfully and loudly shut and locked the door on themselves in pledging Israel’s total destruction (wiped off the face of the earth)and they death pledg to never turn from that path. To suggest otherwise is to call Hamas a liar. To suggest otherwise and could only be concocted in the mind of the ignorant or notorious, of both.

  • http://warpages-leejay.blogspot.com Liam Bailey

    Franco,

    Hamas’ charter is a document of propaganda. And it is that which gives them such staunch credibility with the Palestinian people as a whole. But if they are so set on the destruction of Israel why have they adhered to ceasefires, and why have they offered Israel a hudna (long-running ceasefire) many times in return for the land taken in 1967.

  • moonraven

    On the topic:

    Blair is still shilling for the Bush Gang.

    Condolences Rice says there will be a Palestinian state, huh….

    In the warhorse Puccini opera, Madame Butterfly, Cio-Cio-San sings, One fine day….

    The message of the opera is: There will be no one fine day.

    Condolences has been in the pancake mix box since Nicolas Maduro fried her fritters at the OAS in June.

    Nothing she says is worth anything–as she is “quemada”, as we say here in Latin America.

  • Franco

    #7 —Liam Bailey

    You propose a question and a statement. I am responding to your question here and your statement in the next post.

    Liam sez…”But if they (Hamas) are so set on the destruction of Israel why have they adhered to ceasefires, and why have they offered Israel a hudna (long-running ceasefire) many times in return for the land taken in 1967.

    Liam neither of us could begin to answer your question as well as the Hamas leaders themselves. Additionally your 1967 land date is incorrect. The corrort land date will be corrected for you by Hamas leaders themselves in the following videos so you are not longer in the (naivete) about it.

    The reason I have difficulty trusting that you are naive is because for someone to blog as much as you do hear on BC, DC, and your own personal blog on the Palestine Arabs and the Israeli Jewish crisis, you would have to surly know the facts on what you are about to see.

    Hamas – Stages of Israel’s Destruction

    Hamas – From the Sea to the River

    Hamas – We will Drink the Blood of the Jews

  • Franco

    #7 —Liam Bailey

    Liam sez…”Hamas’ charter is a document of propaganda. And it is that which gives them such staunch credibility with the Palestinian people as a whole.

    No argument there. Would you agree to the following simple definition of the word “propaganda”.

    Propaganda [from modern Latin: ‘Propaganda Fide’, literally “propagating the faith”] is a concerted set of messages aimed at influencing the opinions or behavior of large numbers of people. Instead of impartially providing information, propaganda presents information in order to influence its audience in order to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented. (Wikipedia)

    Hamas Covenant
    Their covenant, or charter, says “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.” And that “There is no solution for the Palestinian question except through Jihad. Initiatives, proposals and international conferences are all a waste of time and vain endeavors.”

    Hamas spoken propaganda
    Using children for propaganda on Palestinian TV 2007 (Building the next Hamas generation)
    #1 (Viewer discretion advised)
    #2 (Viewer discretion advised)

  • moonraven

    Viva Hamas! Especially that attractive fat guy with all the kids….

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