And will giving back land lead to a just and lasting peace? If you look at the situation as it is, you will discover that never in the history of Israeli-Arab relations have concessions led to an attitude of conciliation and peace. Just the opposite. Initial concessions have only served to communicate feelings of insecurity and weakness which are capably exploited by the Arabs who are emboldened and encouraged to make further and more excessive demands.
Every retreat before pressure has called forth greater pressure to retreat even further. It all amounts to coercing Israel to take risks when lives are at stake. By not being concerned with their own priroities, Israel lends a certain logic to the Arab arguments: Once Israel has accepted the basic premise that it is proper to compromise its security to placate the Arabs, it is hard to draw red lines. If danger to life is no longer a reason to say “No more,” then what is?
(see link at end)…The weekend’s events in the West Bank have brought Israel and the Palestinians closer to the boiling point than they have been in many years. The escalation of violence in the weekly demonstrations of solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in Israel does not bode well.
But the report Saturday evening of the death of a Palestinian detainee at the Megiddo Prison is even more serious. According to the first report by the Shin Bet security service, the detainee, Arafat Jaradat, from the village of Sair near Hebron, was not involved in the hunger strikes underway in the prisons, which have been stirring foment in the West Bank over the past few weeks.
Jaradat’s death will have to be thoroughly investigated. The timing is very bad and the way all the parties act in the next few days will be critical in determining whether or not a third intifada erupts.
The trouble is that for the first time since 2007, it seems that the Palestinian Authority has an interest in making waves, even if the leadership in Ramallah does not want to see long-term bloody clashes. Firstly, diverting attention away from the PA’s ongoing failure to reach a reconciliation agreement with Hamas to the plight of the Palestinian prisoners creates a much needed issue of consensus. That is apparently why PA-affiliated groups like the Prisoners Club and senior Palestinian officials like Qadura Fares and Jibril Rajoub are active behind the scenes in the current protests.
Secondly, in light of the PA’s worsening economic situation, controlled clashes with Israel could persuade the Arab world, preoccupied with the civil war in Syria and other crises, to renew donations to the PA.
A third issue is the upcoming visit by U.S. President Barack Obama. Leaks from Washington indicate that Iran and Syria will be major subjects of discussion. Widespread protests could persuade the administration to re-engage in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Read More:http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/with-recent-escalation-in-west-bank-israelis-and-palestinians-edge-closer-to-boiling-point.premium-1.505304
It’s a fair question to ask if the Arabs really want peace, and whether they take it seriously, or whether its just a means of waging war from increasing positions of strength. The average Arab is not opposed to violence against Israel and they can’t really be blamed or responsible for these attitudes and feelings. They are the values from which they have been raised on for years. For them to defy them would mean challenging society’s entire hierarchy. Ultimately, from the heads of state to the ordinary man in the street, the Arab world’s attitude toward Israel ie of hatred and contempt; never have there been any serious attempts toward coexistence.