Israel-Palestine Conflict – Do Nothing, Pack Up

9 November, 2009 at 23:45 1 comment

Finally living up to his billing as a celebrated columnist (in my eyes atleast), Thomas Freidman might have stumbled on a solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict in the Holy Land through his latest piece, “Call White House, ask for Barack Obama”. His suggestion – do nothing; pack up. The funny part is that if this were to happen (which it will not because of strategic interests of US in the middle-east, read, protect oil at all costs and put a tab on rogue WMDs and Iran), then the Israelis and Palestinians would each see it as a victory for themselves and rejoice while Uncle Sam drags the peace dove to its grave towards a dark gloomy future…

Enough of my hackneyed analysis and silly doodling. Here are some juicy quotes…

The Israeli-Palestinian peace process has become a bad play. It is obvious that all the parties are just acting out the same old scenes, with the same old tired clichés – and that no one believes any of it anymore. There is no romance, no sex, no excitement, no urgency – not even a sense of importance anymore. The only thing driving the peace process today is inertia and diplomatic habit. Yes, the Israeli-Palestinian peace process has left the realm of diplomacy. It is now more of a calisthenic and yet, as much as we, the audience, know this to be true, we can never quite abandon hope for peace. It is our habit. Indeed, as I ranted about this to a Jordanian friend the other day, he said it all reminded him of an old story.

This peace process movie is not going to end differently just because we keep playing the same reel. It is time for a radically new approach. And I mean radical. I mean something no US administration has ever dared to do: Take down our “Peace-Processing-Is-Us” sign and just go home. Right now we want it more than the parties. They all have other priorities today. And by constantly injecting ourselves we’ve become their Novocain. We relieve all the political pain from the Arab and Israeli decision-makers by creating the impression in the minds of their publics that something serious is happening. “Look, the US secretary of state is here. Look, she’s standing by my side. Look, I’m doing something important! Take our picture. Put it on the news. We’re on the verge of something really big and I am indispensable to it”.

Indeed, it’s time for us to dust off James Baker’s line: “When you’re serious, give us a call: 202-456-1414. Ask for Barack. Otherwise, stay out of our lives. We have our own country to fix”. The fact is, the only time America has been able to advance peace – post-Yom Kippur War, Camp David, post-Lebanon war, Madrid and Oslo – has been when the parties felt enough pain for different reasons that they invited our diplomacy, and we had statesmen – Mr Henry Kissinger, Mr Jimmy Carter, Mr George Shultz, Mr James Baker and Mr Bill Clinton – savvy enough to seize those moments. Today, the Arabs, Israel and the Palestinians are clearly not feeling enough pain to do anything hard for peace with each other — a mood best summed up by a phrase making the rounds at the state department: The Palestinian leadership “wants a deal with Israel without any negotiations” and Israel’s leadership likewise, “wants negotiations with the Palestinians without any deal”.

It seems to me that the conflict is there just for the sake of conflict and hog media columns, suck aid, abetting hatred and milking sympathy for both sides et al. The Israelis and Palestinians both seem to be happy with the status-quo and no one wants to budge a nano-micro-meter towards a resolution no matter how many leaders changed, farce elections, civiilians killed, bombs exploded, soldiers captured, elections rigged and what not. It is like watching the same film over and over again by a stupid world (that includes all of us) hoping idly, for different ending.

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Entry filed under: CWorks, Energy, Life-Theories, News-Media, Politics, Security, WebXP.

Saina Nehwal #6 in Badminton – Stop Celebrating More Summits – Less Solutions – More Inequality

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