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From Random Lengths News By Paul Rosenberg, Senior Editor

On June 25, an Israeli soldier was captured, apparently by a combination of three fringe Palestinian groups, one an offshoot of the military wing of Hamas. Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) re-entered Gaza three days latter, on a mission to find him. Two weeks later, another Islamic resistance group, Hezbollah, captured two more IDF soldiers, and IDF forces retaliated quickly, launching an ever-widening aerial bombardment, hitting the Beirut airport, and other key infrastructures in northern Lebanon, as well as numerous targets in Hezbollah-controlled southern Lebanon, while Hezbollah launched missiles into Israel's interior.

Israel's massive response--meant to destroy Hezbollah--appears on the brink of massive failure, since Hezbollah's mere survival is enough to severely undermine the aura of Israeli invincibility built up over the decades. Like America's invasion of Iraq, the attacks seem to have been launched without any thought about what comes next, or having a "plan B" in case things didn't work out as hoped for.

But there's a deeper connection to the US invasion of Iraq.

On March 28, 2002, 22 members of the Arab League unanimously approved a Saudi-crafted peace initiative at a summit in Beirut. The "Beirut Declaration" as it came to be known had the appearance of a dramatic gesture, promising to explicitly recognize Israel's right to exist, in exchange for a return of the Occupied Territories.

Had it been pursued, the carnage and chaos now unfolding in Lebanon could have been rendered impossible. What's more, such a peace agreement would have deprived al Qaeda of a major grievance to exploit, and made it much easier to strengthen moderate voices throughout the Arab world and among Muslims generally. Instead, the Bush Administration remained focused on invading Iraq, under the false assumption that this would benefit Israel as well.

"They totally ignored it," Mideast expert Steven Zunes told Random Lengths. "It was a major breakthrough offering pretty much what Israel had been wanting all these years--land for peace."

Zunes is the author of Tinderbox: U.S. Middle East Policy and the Roots of Terrorism.

Ironically--or predictably, depending on your perspective--the current hostilities have disrupted yet another Arab peace effort that most Americans have never heard of. The original kidnapping derailed a promising agreement between Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, and Gaza's Hamas government. It called for a political initiative, explicitly endorsing a two-state solution, recognizing Israel's right to exist, and calling for the creation of a Palestinian government of national unity--just the sort of entity that could credibly negotiate such a solution.

Furthermore, the kidnappings were just a pretext on both sides. Both Hezbollah, and the IDF had long been planning their attacks, simply waiting for the right moment, the right excuse to launch them.

The Beirut Declaration came at a dire moment, much like the present situation, with Arafat physically under Israeli attack, and General Anthony Zinni--the American mediator hand-picked by Secretary of State Colin Powell--working furiously for a cease-fire. But the Beirut Declaration went far beyond responding to the immediate crisis. Two weeks later, Powell had a two-hour working meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah and other top Saudi officials, sharply focused on the Beirut Declaration. Despite Powell's hopeful press conference afterwards, the US never showed further interest.

Although not known at the time, Bush had already decided to invade Iraq, and thus put the Israeli/Palestinian conflict on the back burner. The decision had put the British government in a bind, as British reporter Michael Smith wrote in The Telegraph on September 18, 2004: "A Secret UK Eyes Only briefing paper was warning that there was no legal justification for war. So Mr. Blair was advised that a strategy would have to be put in place which would provide a legal basis for war."

This mid-March 2002 paper was part of a trail leading directly to the July 23 "Downing Street Memo," in which Richard Dearlove, head of British foreign intelligence service MI6, reported that in Washington "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy" of going to war against Iraq.

The Arab Summit had also passed a resolution unanimously opposing that invasion. The Bush Administration ignored both resolutions. Yet, it was necessary to appear engaged and peace-seeking in June 2002. Bush gave a major speech about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, but failed to even mention the Beirut Declaration.

"He was trying to appear more even-handed to assuage the anger in the Arab world," Zunes explained. "But the failure to even refer to the increasing urgent Arab peace initiative indicates he wasn't all that serious about it."

Since then, the Beirut Declaration has virtually disappeared from memory in the US. "Its indicative of yet another manifestation of the rewriting of the history of the conflict, that wants to make the US seem like the only hope for peace," Zunes said. This creates a "rationale for the contradictory role that the US plays of the chief mediater and chief backer of the more powerful party in the conflict."

By never discussing Arab peace initiatives the fantasy is maintained that only Israel and the US are interested in peace. And this, in turn, is used to justify their resort to war. Similar contradictions plague supposed US support for democracy, as seen in the fact that Israel is attacking two Arab democracies--Lebanon and the Palestinian Authority--and that its actions have been condemned by a third: our own creation, the new Iraqi government.

The situation directly clashes with the alleged neo-con "idealism" about democratizing the Middle East. Zunes saw two possible interpretations of what was happening with the neo-con's "democracy" agenda. "The more cynical one [interpretation] is it was a desperate rationale, given the lack of weapons of mass destruction and the lack of a connection to al Qaeda," after the invasion of Iraq--around the time when the neo-cons dramatically stepped up their talk about democracy.

"The second is they were naive enough to assume that democracy means pro-American­­­­--pro-American and free-market capitalist," Zunes explained, then added, "Its no accident that half the neocons are former Trotskyites. They have the same ideological blindness." (Irving Kristol, considered the founder of American neo-conservatism, was only the most prominent of the neo-cons to have been a member of the Fourth International--the worldwide organization of anti-Stalinst communists--during the late 1930s and 1940s. Over time, the neo-con's enduring anti-Stalinism lead them to form alliances with the CIA and the American defense establishment, pulling them first to the right of the Democratic Party, then into the Republican Party.)

General Zinni, the Middle East envoy when the Beirut Declaration was announced, soon became one of the earliest critics of the coming war. On August 24, 2002, the Tampa Tribune reported on his speech to Economic Club of Florida in Tallahassee:

"Zinni said a war to bring down Iraqi strongman Saddam Hussein would have numerous undesirable side effects and should be low on the nation's list of foreign policy objectives."

In the speech, Zinni said, "The Middle East peace process, in my mind, has to be a higher priority. Winning the war on terrorism has to be a higher priority. More directly, the situation in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Central Asia need to be resolved, making sure Al Qaeda can't rise again from the ashes that are destroyed. Taliban cannot come back--that the warlords can't regain power over Kabul and Karzai, and destroy everything that has happened so far.

"Our relationships in the region are in major disrepair, not to the point where we can't fix them, but we need to quit making enemies we don't need to make enemies out of. And we need to fix those relationships. There's a deep chasm growing between that part of the world and our part of the world. And it's strange, about a month after 9/11, they were sympathetic and compassionate toward us. How did it happen over the last year? And we need to look at that -- that is a higher priority."

Bush didn't listen. And the Mideast is again engulfed in flames.   

 

Originally posted to Paul Rosenberg on Mon Aug 07, 2006 at 07:14 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Beirut Declaration Text (8+ / 0-)

    here from the Saudi Embassy website.

    (No wonder the M$M can't seem to find it!)

    •  Thanks for the link. (0+ / 0-)

      It's a beautiful document - brings tears to my eyes.  The only place I've heard of it before is on the blog Raed in the Middle.  (Probably Juan Cole covered it too, before I started reading him.)

    •  And the more recent effort (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Paul Rosenberg, DSPS owl

      AFAIC, this was a huge first step:

      Palestinian Factions Recognize Israel, Sort Of
      After Weeks of Negotiations, Hamas and Fatah Agree on Plan That Implicitly Recognizes Israel

      By IBRAHIM BARZAK

      GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip Jun 27, 2006 (AP)— The rival Hamas and Fatah movements agreed on a plan implicitly recognizing Israel, a top Palestinian official said Tuesday after weeks of acrimonious negotiations aiming to lift crippling international aid sanctions.

      Moderate President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah has been trying to coax his Hamas rivals into endorsing the document, which calls for a Palestinian state alongside Israel, in effect recognizing the Jewish state. He has endorsed the plan as a way to end sanctions against the Hamas-led Palestinian government and pave the way to reopening peace talks with Israel.

      [...]

      The plan also calls on militants to limit attacks to areas captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast War and calls for formation of a coalition Palestinian government.

      [...]

      The document was formulated by senior Palestinian prisoners held by Israel.

      However, the deal was overshadowed by a crisis over the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier and opposition to the deal voiced by Islamic Jihad, a small militant group that has carried out numerous attacks against Israel.

      Most people won't know how close they came.

      Liberal: "I still think it's a respectable word. Its root is "liber," the Latin word for "free," and isn't that what we are all about?"--Mary McGrory

      by mini mum on Wed Aug 09, 2006 at 05:51:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hezbollah not a Palestinian resistance group (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MrSandman

    Let's squash that bug before it takes wing here.

    Their real God is money-- Jesus just drives the armored car. © 2006 All Rights Reserved

    by oblomov on Mon Aug 07, 2006 at 07:17:55 PM PDT

    •  Hezbollah Was Created In Resistance To Israel's (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson

      1982 Invasion of Lebanon

      As Wikipedia notes:

      The Hezbollah[1] (Arabic: حزب الله‎ ḥizbu-llāh,[2] meaning Party of God) is a Shi’a Islamic organization and political party in Lebanon,[3][4] comprising a military and a civilian arm,[5] whose primary stated goal is to defend Southern Lebanon against present or future Israeli occupation.[6] Within Lebanon and the Muslim world, Hezbollah is widely regarded as a legitimate resistance group,[7] but the United States, Canada, and Israel consider it a terrorist organization.

      •  Yes. And nothing to do with Palestine (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MrSandman, ybruti

        Initially, the Shi'ites in southern Lebanon were angry at the Palestinians for bringing their crap up with them when Israel kicked them out. So when Israel invaded Lebanon, the Shi'ites weren't all that upset. They thought the Israelis would quickly get rid of them and leave.

        Then they stayed. The Shi'ites got angrier and angrier. They become Hizballah.

        Now Hizballah has at least some ties with some Palestinians, but they are not a Palestinian resistance group. No way, no shape, no how.

        •  Like I Said, Below... (0+ / 0-)
          Editing error.  One word. Changed now.
        •  Was there an update I missed or did the original (0+ / 0-)

          diary read

          another Palestinian resistance group, Hezbollah

          which now reads

          another Islamic resistance group, Hezbollah

          Or is my short term memory truly going and I should seek help somewhere, if I can remember where . . .

          •  For The Third Time, Now! (0+ / 0-)

            Yes. It was an editing error.  I changed the one word to make it read the way it should have in the first place.

            Such a flurry of comments. I should make editing mistakes more often.

            •  From the FAQ, on editing diaries (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MrSandman

              "Editing diaries

              After a diary has been posted, its text can be edited. To edit a diary, click on the 'Edit diary' link just underneath the title. The page that appears is similar to the New Diary screen, except that the existing text of the diary has already been filled in. Make the desired edits, click Preview to check that everything is displaying correctly, and then click the 'Update' button to change the text.

              Updates can be timestamped by placing [UPDATE] (including the square brackets) in the diary; when the story is saved, this will be replaced with the date/time of the update and the user ID of the updater (almost always the diary author).

              If the edit consists of removing text, it is preferable to use strike-out (use the tags) rather than simply deleting the text."

              IMO it is preferable to reveal editing with updates, especially if the edited word or segment has caused a flurry of comments.

              Their real God is money-- Jesus just drives the armored car. © 2006 All Rights Reserved

              by oblomov on Mon Aug 07, 2006 at 07:51:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Sorry. (0+ / 0-)

              I apologized downthread after you clarified.

              Guess it's a real life demo of how peace initiatives go to hell, get ignored, or just plain become opportunities wasted.

              Pax. I respect your writing and have no desire to have a dog in this fight. If I could delete the damn comment I would once you had edited the diary. But I can't.

              And we wonder why the peace in the middle east is a dream . . .

      •  I don't see the word Palestinian in there (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MrSandman, ybruti

        do you?

        The Hezb is a Lebanese organization.  It consists of Lebanese Shiites, not Palestinians, who are chiefly Sunni.

        There is nothing wrong with getting your facts right.

        Their real God is money-- Jesus just drives the armored car. © 2006 All Rights Reserved

        by oblomov on Mon Aug 07, 2006 at 07:34:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Me, too. I thought Hamas was in Palestine (0+ / 0-)

      and Hezbollah was Lebanon based.

      I thought there were two distinct fronts in this war. Which doesn't change the thrust of the diary, but weakens what is otherwiase a great point.

      Which, if I get it right, is that not all the world thinks the american exportation of democracy as a commodity is a great deal and some might question who the real terrorists are and where they exist.

      All because this administration has no foreign policy except shooting from the hip and civilians be damned.

  •  I have to wonder how much chance the Beirut (0+ / 0-)

    Declaration or the Abbas-Hamas agreement had of getting anywhere, considering first that the Israelis were not involved in their formulation and therefore had no stake in either one, and second, that recent Israeli governments have really only considered an empty shell of an independent Palestine, like the Bantustan cosmetic states in South Africa pre-Mandela.

    Their real God is money-- Jesus just drives the armored car. © 2006 All Rights Reserved

    by oblomov on Mon Aug 07, 2006 at 07:44:16 PM PDT

    •  You're Missing the Point (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mickT, cotterperson, nio, MrSandman

      A peace initiative from one side is an opening for dialogue.  One that starts with offering Israel recognition opens with a major concession.

      Of course Israel wouldn't go for it.  Israel's political system is insane. But if we were serious about winning the war on terrorism, we would have politely told Israel, "This is your big chance.  You're never going to get something better than this."  Of course, we couldn't tell Israel that, because our political system is insane, too.

      But, that's the point of the diary.

      •  Well, I certainly don't disagree (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ybruti

        that there is insanity aplenty out there.

        However, the recent Israeli governments have not listened to the US on any issue of substance, except (possibly) to try to draw Syria into the conflict so the US neocons can widen the Long War.

        As long as we subsidize their land theft on the West Bank and their regional bullying, why should they?

        Their real God is money-- Jesus just drives the armored car. © 2006 All Rights Reserved

        by oblomov on Mon Aug 07, 2006 at 08:00:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  When Hezbollah offered a cease fire (0+ / 0-)

        the Israeli response was that it showed a sign of weakness.

        Israel's United Nations ambassador, Dan Gillerman, said that Sheik Hassan Nasrallah's offer of a truce was "a sign of weakness ... and he may be looking for a way out."

        When some form -- any form -- of stopping the carnage is a "sign of weakness", the war on terror has definitely been lost.

        We are all totally insane if we continue to support these views.

      •  Glad you wrote this (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Paul Rosenberg, DSPS owl

        I too have been mentioning this lost opportunity here and there lately - I felt at the time that I literally watched Sharon receive the plan and toss it over his shoulder into the trash. And Bush gave absolutely no push.

        It was groundbreaking. All the jabber about everyone against Israel, and here was an offer to NORMALIZE relations, not just recognize Israel, and it went into the ether.

        And its too bad that the first dozen comments here are taken up with editing issues. The issue is peace. God is it ever. Israel is blinkered. Bushco in similarly so, on the same militaristic and unilateralist track. Very scary combination.

        I bet a lot of average Americans dont even know this Arab League initiative exists. It really should be talked about more, especially since the image given by lots of talking heads, Israeli and others, is that there is utter intransigence region-wide.

        Again, good of you to broadcast it.

        Should a liberal Dem blog be driven into "safe zones" by a tame party, or should it drive a tame party to break out?

        by NYCee on Tue Aug 08, 2006 at 09:27:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Bush's being turned down by Putin (0+ / 0-)

    at the G8, when Bush offered membership in the WTO in exchange for Russian support for US Iran bashing, is not a trivial event.

    The US would like Christian Lebanon finally to commit fully to Westernization -- to invite the US to locate bases there. The US/Israeli "invasion" appeared to be part of a deal already in place.  Suddenly the Xtians are hedging. Now it gets really interesting!

    Perhaps the Palestinian people will finally gain more status than being the most expendable pawns in the Great Game. Israel, I'm afraid, is going to be in very deep shit no matter what happens.

  •  Just Arab? (0+ / 0-)

    By never discussing Arab peace initiatives the fantasy is maintained that only Israel and the US are interested in peace.

    Didn't I read that Condi dismissed a letter from Iran without even reading it some weeks or months ago?  

    Even if the USA someday gets back into diplomacy/negotiating/statesmanship, it's going to take decades, maybe generations, before we're trusted and respected again.

  •  Thanks for posting... (0+ / 0-)

    Every other day, there's sufaces further evidence of this administrations in-eptitude. When will enough be enough? I suppose as long as Bushco can keep operating behind the curtain, the general public will not see enough to dislodge our failed leaders.

    And thanks for the Rescue SusanG!

    "no better time than now, no better place than here"
     - rage against the machine

    by In A World Gone Mad on Wed Aug 09, 2006 at 04:54:28 AM PDT

  •  The Beirut Plan (0+ / 0-)

    Jerusalem

    It calls for forfeiting Jerusalem and all Jewish holy sites.  It is a thousands steps beyond UN resolutions, or a call to return to the original 1948 lines on Jerusalem, and as such is an instant non-starter.  It does not call for sharing control over or access to holy sites. It just gives them to the Palestinians.  And just FYI, the Palestinians deny the existence of any Jewish holy sites in East Jerusalem.  This was a guarnateed non-starter, and tells you up front it was never considered to be too serious, rather than merely PR.  Note, please, that while it evokes UN Resolution 194 about refugees, it rejects that same resolution on Jerusalem.  The Resolution calls for #  protection and "free access to the Holy Places" and demilitarization and UN control over Jerusalem."  How can Israel, or any nation, take seriously a proposal that purports to rely upon UN resolutions, but cherry picks them for the benefit of one side, on issues seen by both sides as ultimate issues?  And why does this diary not note any of this?

    Refugees

    While the Arab Plan is mealy-mouthed about refugees, saying only

    Achievement of a just solution to the Palestinian Refugee problem to be agreed upon in accordance with UN General Assembly Resolution 194.

    that Resolution is not mealy-mouthed at all, and would instantly change Israel from a Jewish State to a Palestinian State, guaranteeing ultimately a one-state solution.  You see, the Resolution's language is:

    Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible;

    What does that mean?  It means that after 60 years, more than 3 million Arabs who left during the '48 war may return to villages that no longer exist, displacing those who live there now, and demographically ending Israel.  Previously here, I have seen a lot about financial reparations, but how many really think the way to a two-State solution is two Palestinian states?  Say so if that's what you mean, but if it isn't, don't hide behind vague words and empty promises.

    Now Hypnocrites cartoons are for sale on T-Shirts, buttons, and more.

    by dhonig on Wed Aug 09, 2006 at 05:31:42 AM PDT

    •  You are likely right (0+ / 0-)

      about all those details.  (Sorry if you do not like that word.)  But no side is going to offer a package which in all particulars is acceptable to another side right off the bat.  Cherry picking a bit here, a bit there may be necessary.

      And you may even be right that it is a non-starter, as in tragically bad joke.

      To me, who knows little, it looks like it signals a willingness to talk.  And that, IMHO, is where any chance for a peaceful solution has to start.
      _

    •  A Peace Initiative Is Not A Final Plan (0+ / 0-)

      Israel always has a reason to reject any Arab initiative.  Some is usually factually false, and some based on false premises.

      An example here of the factually false is:

      It calls for forfeiting Jerusalem and all Jewish holy sites.

      This is simple not true.  The Declaration states:

      #
      Further calls upon Israel to affirm....
      © The acceptance of the establishment of a Sovereign Independent Palestinian State on the Palestinian territories occupied since the 4th of June 1967 in the West Bank and Gaza strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

      That's East Jerusalem, not Jerusalem.  And no mention at all of any holy sites.  Many different plans have been proposed regarding how to deal with Jerasulam and its environs.  There are many ways to give the Palestinians the capital they want, if there is the will to find peace.

      The most significant false premise is that an initial position is treated as a final one.  Whoever does this is simply not interested in peace, and wants to place the blame on the other side.

      I have a much higher opinion of you than that.  Unfortunately, many, many otherwise rational Jews are as incapable of rational thinking about Palestinians as Southern whites in the 1950s were incapable of rational thinking about blacks.

      And yet, desegregation did far more good for Southern whites than it did for blacks.  It opened the South to a massive influx of people and investments that otherwise would never have come, while the vast majority of blacks continued to live in a subordinate status that has still not been seriously addressed.

      This is hardly a unique outcome. A very similar denouemont has unfolded in post-apartheid South Africa.

      If an Arab/Israeli peace plan were to be signed, we could expect much the same outcome as a result.  Israel had an enormously positive image in the world before the 1967 War.  It had its own Peace Corps in dozens of developing nations.  And it was overwhelmingly a secular society.  It has turned itself into a gross monstrosity since then, much like the South had become in the 1950s.  And like virtually all gross monstrosities, it believes itself to be the pinacle of human acheivment.

      In such a deluded state, its only hope lies with the unthinkable.  Because everything thinkable is a delusion.

      •  East Jerusalem (0+ / 0-)
        includes the holy sites.  Tje Arab Plan, bexause it included refugee return and East Jerusalem, is really noting new, which is why the preumption Isreal erred by not responding is flawed.  Since at least the time of the Dadat-Begin peace, the Arab states have not been able to destroy Israel.  Hence, the offer to "recogize" Israel in exchange for everything they want is pretty darned empty, and is why hyperbole about Israel's non-response overblown.  Once Egypt ams Jordan were out od the death-to*israel camp, the most they could hope for is demographic destruction, and that was the offer.

        Now Hypnocrites cartoons are for sale on T-Shirts, buttons, and more.

        by dhonig on Wed Aug 09, 2006 at 09:57:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Israel Always Has Excuses (0+ / 0-)

          The littany we always here from Israel is that they won't negotiate as long as the Arabs won't recognize Israel's right to exist.

          So, they come out with a declaration that clearly announces it will recognize Israel's right to exist, and new grounds are brought up to dismiss it.

          Typical.

          And, as I said the first time, nothing was said about the holy sites.  Nothing.

          One sort of proposal that's been made in the past is for East Jerusalem to be recognized as the Palestinian capital, with a small capital district, akin to Vatican City in Rome.  The rest of East Jerulsalem would be administered by joint authority.  Many other arrangements are possible.

          But those who want war don't want to think about them.  They'd rather pretend that (a) they really are interested in peace and (b) no one else is.  It's a double lie.

          Following his meeting with Crown Prince Abdullah and Prince Bandar in Casablanca, shortly after the summit, Powell opened his press conference thus:

          Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. I just had a very productive two-and-a-half hour session with Crown Prince Abdullah and Foreign Minister Saud and other Saudi officials, to include Prince Bandar. And as you would imagine, our discussions focused mostly on the situation in the Middle East. I reviewed my mission with the Crown Prince. I also thanked him for the excellent work that he did at the summit meeting in Beirut which produced the declaration out of that summit meeting where all 22 Arab states would recognize and have normal relations with the State of Israel at the end of the negotiating period. I also said that the President was very much looking forward to his visit at the end of April.

          Clearly, Powell recognized this as a significant more.  And Bush ignored it.

          Suddenly, you think Bush is smarter, wiser, and more interested in peace than Colin Powell?

          •  no (0+ / 0-)
            Bush will always be the putz of putzes.  Perhaps I misunderstood the diary, to be about Israel's reaction to the Arab Plan, and not America's.  From Israel's point of view, it offered norhing new, and was a HUGE step back from Resolution 194,  which most sides recognized as a nom-dinal starting point.  In other words, a step BACK, not forward.  Why shoild Israe have been excited about a huge step back as a starting point for negotiation?  That is not a rhetorical question, bit a real response to a diary extolling the virtues of the "Arab Plan."

            Now Hypnocrites cartoons are for sale on T-Shirts, buttons, and more.

            by dhonig on Wed Aug 09, 2006 at 10:42:24 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  typing on a phone (0+ / 0-)
              sorry about the typos.

              Now Hypnocrites cartoons are for sale on T-Shirts, buttons, and more.

              by dhonig on Wed Aug 09, 2006 at 10:48:45 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  It's All About America's Reaction (0+ / 0-)

              It's no accident that Bush is in the sub-head and Israel is not.  The whole story is about American policy and politics, period.

              Israel, IMHO, is utterly hopeless. They are powerless to secure their future,  They absolutely must have the US as an honest broker.  But the US has repeatedly abandoned that role, in order to be Israel's "friend."

              Well, it's like that old saw about parents having to make a tough choice sometimes, between their kid's parents, and being their friend.  The US has repeatedly made the wrong choice, and Israel has paid a terrible price as a result.

              The best thing the US could possibly do for Israel is to abandon it as a friend.  But of course, like any needy child, this is the last thing in the world that Israel will stand still for.

              And that, of course, is all without mentioning the elephant in the room--America's own imperialist agendas, which are far and away the most dominant force in the equation.

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