Original Commentary on West Bank/Gaza
- Combining State-Building and a Political Horizon
- Original Commentary | Jun 8, 2010
Special Envoy for Middle East Peace George Mitchell at Palestine Investment Conference (AP)
What is the significance of the Palestine Investment Conference that will take place on June 1 and 2? What has the U.S. Government done to assist in preparing for the conference?
First we should put it in context. The Palestine Investment Conference is part of the PA’s overall institution and state-building effort. Since the summer of 2007, the PA under President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad has taken some very significant reforms that are aimed directly at improving the livelihoods of
- A First Look
- Original Commentary | Jun 1, 2010
Mavi Marmara Flotilla Ship (AP)
Below are a few pieces analyzing yesterday’s events and their repercussions:
After the Raid, Israel Needs a New Way Forward
by The Baltimore Sun
Despite the release of videos from both sides in the conflict between protesters and Israeli soldiers aboard a freighter off the Gaza coast, the precise nature of the incident that left nine civilians dead and several soldiers wounded is unclear. … Ultimately, it will probably be impossible to arrive at answers to those questions that will be
- Initiative for the Old City
- Original Commentary | May 11, 2010
Dome of the Rock & Western Wall (AP)
You are in town for the launch of the the Jerusalem Old City Initiative from Windsor University; what is the objective of the plan that is being announced tomorrow?
Sher: It is an attempt to suggest one possible solution for the Old City which has become the heart of the Jerusalem issue, a major sticking point in resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The uniqueness of this place stems from it being holy to the three monotheistic religions. We thought that by trying
- Borders as a Core Issue
- Original Commentary | Apr 29, 2010
Israeli proposal at Annapolis talks (Dan Rothem)
To see full-sized maps prepared by Dan Rothem click on images.
The United States is working to launch proximity talks between Israelis and Palestinians, and one of the main issues will be borders. What are the territorial compromises that are possible from both sides in order to reconcile Israel’s need for security with the Palestinian aspiration for statehood?
The stated U.S. formula creates a sort of a equation between the ‘Palestinian goal of
- Flexibility and Perseverance Required
- Original Commentary | Apr 27, 2010
Senator Mitchell with Presidents Peres and Abbas (AP)
Frustration regarding efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has generated much discussion lately about whether the Obama administration should present its own peace plan to the parties. Such a move is a tempting alternative to the lack of obvious progress toward direct negotiations, and it would certainly shake things up. As the idea of a U.S. plan gains currency, however, it is important to consider the implications of such an announcement.
First, we must remember that U.S. leadership in this dispute
- An Interview with Nabil Al Khatib
- Original Commentary | Apr 15, 2010
Nabil Khatib at MEP event
Tell us about the project that you are working on with Internews.
I was working in Ramallah just when the Oslo Accords were signed and we [Palestinian journalists] got busy developing Palestinian media. When I moved to Dubai 10 years later, I realized how important the role of Arab media was in the current situation. Palestinians rely on pan-Arab media for news, more than on their own media, and for people in the Gulf, North Africa and Levant, to say the
- The Continued Importance of U.S.-Israel Relations
- Original Commentary | Apr 1, 2010
Secretary Clinton speaks at 2010 AIPAC Policy Conference (State Dept.)
Following Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to the United States last week, the U.S. and Mideast press continue to analyze U.S.-Israeli relations and implications for the peace process.
Below are some news items and analysis pieces addressing the issue.
For more on U.S.-Israel relations, see our recent interview with Robert Wexler, former congressman and the president of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace.
Hobby or Necessity?
by Thomas Friedman (The New York Times)
If you think this latest
- Maintaining the Unbreakable Bond
- Original Commentary | Mar 16, 2010
President Peres and VP Biden in Jerusalem (AP)
What do you think were the goals of Vice President Joe Biden’s trip to Israel?
The vice president’s, and also the president’s, goals were actually quite straightforward in that the vice president was going to Israel to reaffirm the special relationship, the unbreakable bond, between the United States and Israel. The vice president was the ideal communicator of that message because for him that sentiment has been a three-decade-plus heartfelt position that he has advocated throughout his entire public career. So
- A Briefing on Borders
- Original Commentary | Feb 25, 2010
Last Friday marked the fifth anniversary of the demonstrations near the separation barrier in the West Bank village of Bil’in. In parallel, Israel begun two weeks ago moving the barrier in the area according to the High Court’s ruling from 2007. Why do the demonstrations go on if the barrier is in the process of being rerouted?
The formal Palestinian position on the barrier is that it should be built on the Green Line. In Bil’in, after rerouting the barrier, approximately
- A Regional View From Israel
- Original Commentary | Feb 18, 2010
What do you see as Israel’s main foreign policy priorities?
At this point in time I think that the priorities are very clear. Very high on the agenda is something that the entire free world sees as a priority; this is the question of Iran and the attempts by the Iranians to acquire nuclear military capabilities. This is very high on the list, as is the role that Iran is playing in destabilizing the region, supporting terror and many other activities.