Time for Israeli-PLO Talks

Opening direct talks with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) at this juncture in the Arab-Israeli peace negotiations could benefit Israel's short- and long-term interests and provide the peace process with renewed momentum. The United States should encourage such a move and in return bring pressure to bear on the PLO to demonstrate more flexibility. Excluding the PLO formally from past direct talks may have given Israel some room for political maneuverability and some gains in establishing the peace negotiating parameters. The growing strength of the Palestinian Islamic fundamentalists (Hamas), however, the perplexing direction that Israeli-Palestinian bilateral negotiations have taken, and the changing of administrations in Washington all raise a question as to whether Israel's interests and the prospects for peace are not better served through direct negotiations with the PLO.

December 11, 1992 Read more

United Jerusalem – A Catalyst for Peace

As Israel this month celebrates the 25th anniversary of a united Jerusalem, the Bush administration should look anew at the Jerusalem "experiment" and its impact on Israeli-Palestinian relations, and utilize it as a catalyst for a breakthrough in the peace negotiations.

June 24, 1992 Read more

Israel Should Withdraw Loan Guarantee Request

Israel should withdraw its request for $10 billion in loan guarantees and resort to other sources to finance the absorption of Soviet Jews. At stake is the United States-Israel special relationship – which could be irreparably damaged as a result of misguided policies in Washington and Jerusalem.

March 6, 1992 Read more

Creating The Conditions For Peace

Following Israel and Syria's rejection of President Bush's compromise proposal to convene a regional peace conference, a reassessment of the U.S. Middle East strategy and role is critical at this juncture. To break the impasse, the U.S. must develop not only a new stategy but advance a dramatic and comprehensive peace plan of its own that meets the minimum national requirements of the conflicting parties.

December 11, 1991 Read more

Before Guns Are Silent, Prepare For Peace

President Bush's decision to use force to reverse Iraqi occupation of Kuwait and his reliance on the United Nations resolutions to carry out that mandate have introduced a new balance of power in the Middle East and stimulated the emergence of new alliances. Middle East regional security and a future solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict will be dramatically affected by these developments.

January 11, 1991 Read more

Peace of Reconciliation

There are two words for peace in Arabic, "Salam," meaning a state of non-belligerency is currently preferred by Arabs over "Sulh", which suggests reconciliation – the kind of peace sought by Israelis. The difference between the two words is not mere semantics, it reflects the nature of the different objectives brought to the peace conference by Arabs and Israelis.

February 11, 1990 Read more

Without Syria, Peace Will Remain Elusive

By focusing primarily on Israel and the Palestinians in its strategy for peace in the Middle East, the Bush administration is ignoring a third essential player – Syria. Secretary of State James Baker's call on Israel to "lay aside, once and for all, the unrealistic vision of greater Israel and forswear annexation," and his equally blunt call to the Palestinians "to speak in one voice … and amend the Palestinian Liberation Organization covenant and resort to a dialogue of politics and diplomacy" was certainly courageous, balanced, and overdue. Peace will not be achieved, however, without Syria's ultimate cooperation. Syrian President Hafez Assad's self-imposed mission to shape the Arab agenda on the Palestinian and Lebanese issues has often strained his relationships with his fellow Arab leaders and further complicated the Israeli-Palestinian crisis.

May 25, 1989 Read more
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