by John Hawkins | April 10, 2002 1:37 pm
Questions and Futility of the Arab Vision: This is an article I ran across in the “Gulf News” that was written by a Syrian “moderate” named Sami Moubayed. Of course, I’m just assuming he’s a moderate since he’s not calling for exterminating all the Jews and that’s about what passes for a moderate in the Middle East these days. Anyway, this article is instructive about the mentality that makes the Middle Eastern conflict so impossible to solve. I’ll post a few of his quotes and then my responses…
Ariel Sharon, it must be noted, wants radical Arabs to rise to power and foolishly declare war on him. He would love another 1967..
So let me get this straight. Ariel Sharon is angling for another war that means the destruction of his entire nation if he loses? To what end?
He wants to militarise the conflict and has succeeded in transforming it from a stone-throwing campaign, which had the entire world on its side, into an array of suicide bombers who have aroused pro-Israeli sympathy from the international community.
Now the writer theorizes that Ariel Sharon actually WANTS suicide bombers to arouse “Pro-Israeli” sympathy?!? Yes, Israel’s incursion into the occupied territories right now in response to the suicide bombings is certainly bringing sympathy down on them from around the world isn’t it?
Sharon has worked relentlessly since September 11 to portray the Palestinians as terrorists and depict his war against them as similar to the U.S. campaign in Afghanistan. Yasser Arafat was seen as another Osama bin Laden and the PA were seen as the Taliban.
Bush had his own reasons to strike at the Arabs. First, he wanted to “punish” them for their refusal to endorse the U.S. campaign against Iraq. More importantly, however, he wanted to voice his resentment to the Iraqi-Gulf rapprochement that was agreed to at the Arab Summit in March 2002.
So now allowing Israel to defend itself from suicide bombers by striking at their source is an attack on the entire Arab world?
Step Two of Sharon’s plan would be to offer Arafat the same proposals made by Prime Minister Ehud barak at the Camp David talks in 2000. The Palestinians would be given 95 per cent of the West Bank and Gaza, with parts of East Jerusalem, the right of return for a limited number of refugees, and compensation up to $30 billion.
In return the PNA would sign an agreement declaring an end to the state of war with Israel and offer full-recognition to the Jewish state, which would be accompanied by economic deals that would keep the Palestinian economy forever dominated by the Israeli one.
The strings to such an agreement, which led Arafat to reject in 2000 are that the Israelis would continue to have settlements, and would continue to control the border with Jordan. The holy sites in East Jerusalem, which include the Wailing Wall, would remain in the hands of a joint Palestinian-Israeli authority.
In addition the time of the Israeli withdrawal from Palestinian territory and East Jerusalem would be left for the Israelis to decide. Gush Shalom, the Israeli peace movement, described the agreement and its proposals as “humiliating.”
Here’s the real crux of the problem. Any sort of compromise is a bitter defeat and unendurable humiliation for the Palestinians. Getting East Jerusalem, 95% of the land, joint control of Holy sites, 30 billion dollars, and their own state is the equivalent to a puppy having his nose rubbed into it’s own feces for evacuating it’s bowels on the floor.
“The romantic outcome to the bloodbath in Palestine would be for Arafat to appear on the rooftop of his Ramallah compound, and right before the whole world, raise the Palestinian flag and declare the establishment of the State of Palestine. He would denounce the Israeli campaign as invasion of a sovereign state and declare war, along with 21 Arab nations, against the Jewish state.
Hezbollah would declare war from Lebanon and official Arab armies would march into Israel while voluntary Arab forces would be sent to Palestine to protect its people. Syria would retrieve the Golan Heights, Lebanon would retrieve the Shebaa Farms, and the Arabs would occupy all of Jerusalem and hand it over to the Palestinians.
Then, all 22 Arab leaders would go to the holy city, as Arafat had long hoped for, and pray side-by-side at Al Aqsa Mosque.
Beautiful as it is, this vision is a dream”
So his beautiful, romantic, dream isn’t a negotiated peace with Israelis and Palestinians living together in peace, it’s the entire Middle East rising up and declaring war on Israel? When one side is dreaming of “peace and security” and the other side is dreaming of “regional war” it’s no wonder they’re having trouble meeting in the middle.
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