Dear Friend of Palestinians and Israelis (FPI),
I'm forwarding a "forward-looking" update by our friends in the "Churches for Middle East Peace" (CMEP). At least scan through the brief synopses of the articles that are linked in this post.
It is significantly more upbeat (hopeful) than the history of the "peace talks" deserves. Whether there is enough trust built up to deal with the (true) underlying issues is doubtful. (Facts could be cited, overflowing with bitterness on both sides).
The CMEP is not exactly on the cutting edge of reflection/action for our region, but it aspires, under Warren Clark, to be alert to trends.
The unhurried meeting of the main disputants over at least the next nine months is significant. No doubt about that. But whether it will lead to an independent Palestinian State (Ending the Occupation of land that the International community sees as Palestinian) is truly problematic, given the convictions of Prime Minister Netanyahu and his Likud party platform. Likud's desire to keep its settlement-happy coalition in place is (perhaps) the deciding factor, unless Likud taps into (promised) Labor support to form a new coalition.
There is so much that is not known at this point in the process. It is hard to be hopeful. Why now? Why is Israel even doing this "talking"? There is one overriding factor. The Prime Minister (and Likud) fear a multi-cultural, bi-national State (with full citizenship for Palestinians) even more than they detest a Palestinian State side by side with Israel. The sticking points will be "security" for Israel and the "Right of Return" and definable borders between the two peoples.
Many argue that Israel is decidedly past the point of a viable Two State solution and will only want to "manage the conflict" rather than give the Palestinians what is their due: justice, compensation, their own capital in Jerusalem, etc., etc.
Friends, keep following developments in the mainline media and remember that the major news media is still slanted toward security for Israel rather than justice for Palestinians.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Churches for Middle East Peace
Date: Fri, Aug 2, 2013 at 3:38 PM
Subject: [CMEP Bulletin] "History is not made by cynics."