Kris Clancy" />
side bar
Friday, September 29, 2023


Peace process unlikely without support

The holidays are quickly descending upon us. Already Halloween has passed, and we are only three weeks away from Thanksgiving. As most of the world’s population looks to the holidays as a "time for peace on earth, good will toward men," the Middle East peace process that is being sponsored in Annapolis, Md. by the United States may do nothing more than taint this year’s festive season.

The biggest problem facing this peace process could be the most recent news concerning Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel: he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

If history is any clue to how human nature works, then we can look to the history of Israeli politics and see that when the question of the prime minister’s ability to run the country comes into play, many times it causes a pull-out of major coalition players, thus collapsing the government and forcing new elections.

At a time like this, such a move on the Israelis’ part could completely halt the peace process.

Across the way, President Mahmoud Abbas faces his own problems.

The West Bank and Gaza are still divided territory, which means that they are essentially two separate entities, and reunification is nowhere in sight. Abbas’ call to both the United States and Israel for a six-month timetable is unrealistic, as the Israelis refuse to commit to any timetable unless Abbas is able to control his territory and crack down on militants and their terrorist activities.

With as many factors in play as there are, the biggest question on the minds of many is simple: will there be any progress met at the U.S.-sponsored event?

The answers may be just as precarious as the factors that are currently in play.

If Olmert wants to keep his job, he must make sure his ability to continue in his current position is never questioned.

Already we can see cracks in his coalition with a reprimand passed within the Knesset (the legislative branch of the Israeli government) that stated the current Knesset would not support the turn-over of any parts of East Jerusalem as part of the peace process.

Hamas is sponsoring a rival event on Nov. 7 in Damascus that, if it goes ahead, could create a situation where any future Palestinian state is never seen because the security measures taken by Israel to protect her citizens will render any agreements null and void.

Abbas must foster support, not only among foreign powers, but also among his own people. As long as the Palestinian people do not support the peace process, any joint document issued will be ignored and violence will continue.

The date for the proposed meeting in Annapolis has yet to be set, but both Olmert and Abbas have said they plan to issue a joint document by the end of November or the beginning of December that outlines the future peace process, settles final borders and resolves the issue of Jerusalem and Palestinian refugees.

The world can only wait to see how this process continues, but we must make sure that as we wait we quietly support the moderates on both sides so that an agreement viable for both is reached.

If this is done, then when the meeting at Annapolis is held it will follow much the same way as the Camp David Accords with Egypt: three men sitting at a table, signing a piece of paper that could potentially end one of the world’s longest and most brutal conflicts known to date.

Clancy, a political science senior, can be reached via [email protected]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to Top ↑
  • Sign up for our Email Edition

  • Polls

    What about UH will you miss the least this summer?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...