Kudos to Soros and his article in the New York Review of Books. It is about time that the State of Israel steps down its high war horse and starts seeing things from the ground level. Only then would fellow human beings be able to relate to each other’s problems. Furthermore, if last year’s reactionary invasion and destruction of much of Lebanon –an exercise in futility if the goal was to eradicate or even teach a lesson to Hizballah– is an indication of how ineffective Israel policies have become, people in power, bent south of Armageddon, should start reconsidering their positions and find a path to peace.
The Bush administration is once again in the process of committing a major policy blunder in the Middle East, one that is liable to have disastrous consequences and is not receiving the attention it should. This time it concerns the Israeli–Palestinian relationship. The Bush administration is actively supporting the Israeli government in its refusal to recognize a Palestinian unity government that includes Hamas, which the US State Department considers a terrorist organization. This precludes any progress toward a peace settlement at a time when progress on the Palestinian problem could help avert a conflagration in the greater Middle East.
The United States and Israel seek to deal only with the president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, in the hope that new elections would deny Hamas the majority it now has in the Palestinian Legislative Council. This is a hopeless strategy because Hamas has said it would boycott early elections, and even if their outcome would result in Hamas’s exclusion from the government, no peace agreement would hold without Hamas’s support.