ZioNation - Progressive Zionism and Israel Web Log

ZioNation home Archives Site map Policy Definitions FAQ timeline history documents Links Photos Contact

Articles and Reference

History of Zionism and Israel
Zionism
Middle East Encyclopedia
History of Anti-Semitism
History of Anti-Zionism
Encylopedic Dictionary of Zionism and Israel
Zionism and its Impact
Zionism - Issues & answers
Maps of Israel
Six Day War
War of Independence
Bible
Bible  Quotes
1948 Israel War of Independence Timeline Christian Zionism
Christian Zionism History
Gaza & the Qassam Victims of Sderot
Zionist Quotes
Learn Hebrew
Jew
Anti-Semitism
Pogrom
Israel
Zionists
Israel Boycott?
Boycott Israel?
Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Jew Hate
International Zionism
Commentary in Russian
Middle East
The Grand Mufti Hajj Amin Al Husseini
Albert Einstein
Palestine: Ethnic Cleansing
History Arab-Israeli Conflict
Boycott Israel?
Amnesty International Report on Gaza War


FREE EMAIL SUBSCRIPTION
Subscribe to
ZNN
email newsletter for this site and others

Powered by groups.yahoo.com

As I wrote elsewhere, everyone has agreed that the Palestinian unity talks that began today in Mecca must succeed, as all sides have vowed. They are held in the holy city of Mecca, and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has put his prestige on the line for the success of the negotiations. On the other hand, as Danny Rubinstein points out in Haaretz, there is little chance that they can succeed. The real question is, how will "success" be defined? If they do "succeed," is this "success" likely to be good for Israel or for chances of peace?

Rubinstein writes:

Nobody expects any agreement to turn Palestinian society into a Western democracy overnight, however, and that is not the critical issue that must be resolved.

The big issues, mostly ignored by Rubinstein, must be understood clearly by anyone seeking to evaluate whatever agreement comes out of this summit:

Does the agreement meet Quartet and EU standards to allow the renewal of aid to the PNA and make the PNA into a peace partner once again? As Rubinstein notes this is one huge hurdle. Hamas and Fatah may come up with a formula that satisfies Palestinians, but it is not clear that that formula will satisfy the Quartet and the donor countries. A vague reference to "abiding by past agreements" may not be enough. Real agreement to a peace process would require revocation of the Hamas charter, which calls for destruction of Israel by violent Jihad. Both violence and destruction of Israel are forbidden according to the roadmap.

Who has the power over the budget in the PNA? - Unless all the money is handled transparently, there is no way to overcome charges of corruption and there is no way to check that funding is not being used to purchase arms and hire more thugs, which seems to be the major allocation for much of the funding reaching the PNA at present.

Who is in charge of security? - At present of course, there are several competing groups in charge of security, all officially recognized and funded. Some work for Hamas, some work for Fatah. This is partially responsible for the utter chaos and internecine fighting which has taken many lives in recent weeks.

Will violence against Israel continue? - The lowest common denominator basis for Palestinian unity is the Prisoners' Letter, which states its support for continued "resistance" to the occupation. Cessation of violence is a condition of the roadmap. Truly nonviolent resistance would of course still be permitted. Even if an agreement about this issue is reached, it doesn't seem likely to be implemented.

Are armed groups going to be disarmed? - In addition to the security forces, Palestinian factions maintain armed groups that carry out terror operations against Israel, and in recent weeks, terror operations against each other. Fatah el Aqsa, Izzedin el Qassam and others regularly shoot at each other and sometimes at Israelis. In Palestinian society, political power literally grows out of the barrels of guns. Until these groups are disarmed, and until there is a unified security command, there little chance that any agreement can be kept, or that there can be any real democracy.

Will the Hamas become a member of the PLO, and on what basis? - This issue is related to acceptance of Israel as a partner for peace. However, there are other issues involved, because PLO membership for Hamas will change the character of both the PLO and the Hamas, and it will necessitate major power-sharing concessions by the Fatah movement.

Can there be successful negotiations for prisoner releace? - Israeli-Palestinian talks cannot get underway in earnest unless there is a reasonable (or even unreasable) deal for releasing the kidnapped Israeli soldier, Gilad Shalit. Until now, progress in this direction has apparently been vetoed by Hamas, because of opposition of Khaled Meshal. That is the opinion of Egyptian President Mubarak.

Will Hamas become independent of Syria and Iran? - This is the really crucial question. As long as Hamas is dependent on Syria and Iran, there is little prospect that it will support an American or European-inspired peace effort, because both Syria and Iran are opposed to such an effort.

A likely and rather gloomy outcome is that the talks will result in a photo opportunity and perhaps an "agreement." This agreement, even if it is kept, and even if it is satisfactory to the donor countries, will not result in any real progress. Hamas after all, can meet all of the requisite conditions, and still try to veto any peace agreement whatever. The Prisoners' Letter calls for return of the refugees and 1967 borders. Abbas and the Fateh will never be able to come up with a peace agreement that includes those conditions. While they are opening gambits for moderates, they are probably minimal conditions for Hamas. Therefore, Hamas is in a good position to agitate against any agreement, because it would ahve to violate the conditions of the Prisoners' Letter.

In this case, the rational scenario, the Palestinians will enjoy aid from the EU and USA and support of the Arab states. Very likely, for example, the meeting will endorse the Arab peace initiative, which has sufficient "creative ambiguity" in it to allow for destruction of Israel while seemingly endorsing peace. It is compatible with continued terror and with demands for return of the refugees for example. The US and EU cannot very well oppose the Arab peace initiative, a darling of the Saudis, if they want Saudi cooperation in keeping the price of oil down and support for the US efforts in Iraq and Iran.

What can Israel's diplomatic response be?

Ami Isseroff


Original content is Copyright by the author 2007. Posted at ZioNation-Zionism and Israel Web Log, http://www.zionism-israel.com/log/archives/00000346.html where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Disributed by ZNN list. Subscribe by sending a message to ZNN-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Please forward by e-mail with this notice, cite this article and link to it. Other uses by permission only.

Click to Reddit! Facebook Share

add to del.icio.us

Add to digg - digg it

Constructive comments, including corrections, are welcome. Do not use this space for spam, publishing articles, self promotion, racism, anti-Zionist propaganda or character defamation. Inappropriate comments will be deleted. See our Comment policy for details. By posting here, you agree to the Comment policy.

Home
Archives

Please take our reader survey!

Links
Our Sites

Zionism
Zionism News Net
Zionism-Israel Pages
Brave Zionism
IsraŽl-Palestina.Info (Dutch & English)
Our Blogs
Israel News
IMO Blog - IsraŽl & Midden-Oosten (NL)
Israel Like this, as if
Zionism News Net
Israel & Palestijnen Nieuws Blog
IsraŽl in de Media


Blog Roll:
Adam Holland
Blue Truth
CIF Watch
Contentious Centrist
Dutchblog Israel (NL/EN)
Harry's Place
Ignoble Experiment
Irene Lancaster's Diary
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Israpundit
Jeff Weintraub Commentaries and controversies
Jewish Issues Watchdog Meretz USA Weblog
Meryl Yourish
Middle East Analysis
MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log
Modernity Blog
normblog
Pro Israel Bay Bloggers
Point of no return
Simply Jews
Solomonia
Something Something
Tempting Topical Topics
The Augean Stables
Unplugged Mike
Oy Bay! San Francisco Bay Area Jews
Vital Perspective
Israel Mon Amour
Liberty & Justice
On the Contrary
Magdeburger Chossid
Tulip - Israeli-Palestinian Trade Union Assoc.
Southern Wolf
Sharona's Week
Sanda & Israel
Fresno Zionism
Anti-Racist Blog
UN-Biased
ZOTW's Zionism and Israel News
Zionism On The Web News
ZOTW's Blogs
Christian Attitudes
Dr Ginosar Recalls
Questions: Zionism anti-Zionism Israel & Palestine
Liberal for Israel

A Jew with a view
BlueTruth
Realistic Dove
Christians Standing With Israel - Blog
Liberticracia
SEO for Everyone
Vision to Reality: The Reut Blog
Calev's Blog
Candidly speaking from Jerusalem
Dvar Dea
Ray Cook
Shimshon 9

Mark Halawa


This link space is 4 your blog - contact us!

Other Web sites and pages:

PeaceWatch Middle East Commentary Christians Standing With Israel
Zionism On the Web
Guide to Middle East, Zionism
Z-Word
Z-Word blog
Labor Zionism
Le Grand Mufti Husseini
The Grand Mufti Hajj Amin El Husseini
ZNN - Zionism News Network Middle East
Euston Manifesto
Jewish Blogging
Peace With Realism
Israel Facts (NL)
Space Shuttle Blog
SEO
Mysterology
Love Poems
At Zionism On the Web
Articles on Zionism
Anti-Zionism Information Center
Academic boycott of Israel Resource Center
The anti-Israel Hackers
Antisemitism Information Center
Zionism Israel and Apartheid
Middle East, Peace and War
The Palestine state
ZOTW Expert Search
ZOTW Forum



Judaica

Judaica: Jewish Gifts:
Shofar
Mezuzah



RSS V 1.0


RSS V 2.0


Help us improve - Please click here to take our reader survey

All entries copyright by the authors and or Zionism-Israel Information Center. Please forward materials by e-mail with URLS. Other uses by permission only.

security