Magog: Unguarded
Magog: Unguarded
Swarming Around... cats living with dogs... total chaos.

Friday, June 13, 2003

The same article cited below also includes this little tidbit:

As the Israeli government targets Palestinian militants in a series of attacks, most Israeli citizens want the strikes to stop, a poll conducted by an Israeli newspaper concluded.
A poll published Friday in the Yediot newspaper found that 67 percent of Israelis surveyed are opposed to the attacks. Nine percent of that majority say they want them to stop altogether.
The rest want the Jewish state to temporarily stop killing Islamic militants in order to give Abbas a chance to work with the militants himself.
The same poll found that two-thirds of Israelis want to end the occupation of Palestinian areas. That backs up remarks made by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who for the first time this month used the word "occupation."

One of the big obstacles to peace in the region, in my humble opinion, is that there is no neat way for either side to back down without losing face.

Sharon could simply cease all airstrikes, and withdraw from some key areas as a show of good faith, but he knows that many will see that as a sign of weakness or vulnerability. The last thing the Israelis want is to give the impression that the terrorism is working.

Abbas could start rounding up Hamas and other terrorist leaders (joining forces with the Israelis even, if necessary), to put what I believe to be the militant minority out of business and demonstrate the separation of his government from such groups. He knows, however, that to do so will be seen as treachery and appeasement.

On the surface, having a third party come in with guns blazing seems like a good idea... shift the blame over to a neutral party. But I envision more of a Mogadishu type scenario than a scene from Shane or The Unforgiven where the hero vanquishes the villains and rides off into the sunset.

So what's the answer? Believe me, if I had it I'd let you know (cop out -- I know). All I can come up with so far, though, is this: absent a plan to save face for both sides, a plan to have both sides lose a little face equally seems the next best thing. But how to get these two groups to compromise is beyond me.

posted by Max Power | 1:32 PM
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