Biggest Danger to Mideast Peace: The 'Peace Process'

It's a fiction, and the US buys into it at Israel's expense
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2010 3:31 PM CDT
Israeli left-wing activists hold signs during a demonstration to protest the upcoming end of the settlement freeze, outside the West Bank Jewish settlement of Talmon, near Ramallah.   (AP Photo/Tara Todras-Whitehill)
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(Newser) – The procession of small agreements and negotiations give the impression of progress in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, but really, the whole idea of the "peace process" is a fiction, writes George Will in the Washington Post. And this fiction of an ongoing process—rather than the intensification of Jihadist-laced anti-Semitism that Will sees in the West Bank—is the biggest threat to reaching peace.

US administrations feel they need to maintain "momentum" by "extorting concessions from Israel, the only party susceptible to US pressure," Will writes. This lopsided process is currently playing out another pointless iteration: Palestinian officials are demanding that Israel extend a 10-month moratorium on construction, in exchange for continuing talks. But the moratorium is a carrot the Palestinians should receive from giving something up in negotiations, not for the simple act of negotiating. And rewarding this tactic will only start the "peace process" over again.

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