Having been engaged in the Arab-Israeli conflict as an advocate for peace, interlocutor, a keen observer and a commentator for much of my adult life, I fantasize once in a while about the regional, if not the global, implications of an Arab-Israeli peace. I allow myself to dream what seems to be an impossible dream because I believe in the dynamism and wealth of the human resources and creativity that both Israelis and Palestinians bountifully enjoy. Peace between Israel and the whole Arab world would usher in a renaissance period to the Middle East that history pages have yet to record.
When Prime Minister Netanyahu announced the expansion of his coalition government to include Kadima, which granted him a historic majority in the Israeli Parliament, I found myself fantasizing again about the prospect of such a comprehensive peace. Truthfully, if a coalition government representing three quarters of the Israeli electorates cannot muster the will and the courage to forge peace, who can, and under what conditions? Israeli and Palestinian leaders, regardless of their political coloration, must sooner than later face, under any circumstances, the inevitability of coexistence. Israel, in particular, who is on the defensive for continuing the occupation and the expansion of settlements, must strive to end its increasing isolation.