Showing posts for "Palestinian Authority"
The goal of Secretary of State Kerry’s energetic diplomacy with the Israelis and Palestinians is the two-state solution, which means the establishment of an independent, sovereign Palestine living at peace with its neighbor Israel.
Or is it? What’s missing in that sentence is the word “democratic.” Do we care? Once upon a time, the United States worked hard to give Yasser Arafat, a terrorist and thief, a state to rule. That policy was changed in the George W. Bush administration, when we began to care not only about the borders of the new Palestine but was within those borders. Bush said he would not support establishment of a Palestinian state if that state would just be another dictatorship, another kleptocracy, another home for terrorism. Read more »
Secretary of State Kerry continues to press forward in his negotiations with Israelis and Palestinians, seeking some sort of “framework” document that would be an acceptable basis for future negotiations. We’ve been here before: the “Roadmap” of 2003 was supposed to provide such a basis and was accepted–with reservations–by both sides. My guess is that Kerry will succeed, if success is defined as keeping both sides at the table. Read more »
Working toward an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement, negotiators always seek “confidence-building measures” or CBMs. These moves are supposed to show good faith and convince the other side to undertake equal steps, or perhaps even more important to show the other side’s good faith. Read more »
There were protests this week about some construction notices issued by the Government of Israel. In tandem with the release of murderers from Israeli prisons–something the United States has indefensibly pushed–the Netanyahu government has sought to appease complaints within Israel by announcing new construction in settlements. Mind you, whether the construction will actually take place, or when, is unclear; the protests come nevertheless. Read more »
This week Russian experts added their voices to those of French experts who had examined Yasser Arafat’s remains to determine if he was poisoned.
“French experts have ruled out a theory that Yasser Arafat was killed by poisoning,” AFP reported several weeks ago. Now BBC reports that “Announcing its conclusions on Thursday, the head of Russia’s Federal Medical-Biological Agency (FMBA), Vladimir Uiba, said ‘Yasser Arafat died not from the effects of radiation but of natural causes.’” Read more »
Just over a week ago the UN General Assembly voted to call 2014 the ”International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.” The vote was 100 for to 7 against, with 56 abstentions. This is a standard outcome in the General Assembly where Israel is concerned. The General Assembly passed an additional five resolutions about Israel, maintaining its obsessive, ridiculous, and indefensible record of attacking the Jewish State. Read more »
There are over 500,000 Palestinian “refugees” in Syria, as counted by the UN agency handling Palestinian “refugees,” the UN Relief and Works Agency or UNRWA. The quotation marks are especially apt in this case, for the great majority of the “refugees” were born in Syria and have lived there all their lives. Only under UNRWA’s definitions of “refugee” (Palestinians who left what is now Israel in 1948, and all of their descendants until the end of time) would they qualify. Read more »
Pressure Points tracks developments in the Middle East and democratization and human rights issues globally.