Peoples Geography — Reclaiming space

Creating people's geographies

Is Israel a partner for peace?

With so much focus and naysaying in the prevailing US-Israeli-Western discourse on whether this or that Palestinan or Arab leader is a “partner for peace”, it is refreshing to see two recent articles in Ha’aretz cast a critical eye on the question of whether in fact Israel is ready and a genuine partner for peace. With recent illegal settlements growing under the cover of war, some would think not. Here are three such articles that are worth reading. More accurately, they each describe how peace efforts are actively thwarted.

:: Is Israel a partner by Uri Benziman (Ha’aretz, 1 October 2006):
“A state that seeks peace with its enemies must, before anything else, change its mental approach to them so that it views them as potential partners. If the enemy is a priori perceived as a devil whose hatred cannot be overcome, then the chances of reaching an understanding with him are null.”

:: Operation Peace for the Winery by Gideon Levy (Ha’aretz, 1 October 2006):
“What is the term for a state that is not even willing to sit at the negotiating table with the head of a state who publicly issues an explicit peace proposal?”

:: An Open Letter to Jeremy Bowen by Arthur Neslan (Counterpunch, 2 October):
“A [joint] peace initiative which could have resolved the Gaza crisis peacefully was effectively sabotaged by Israel’s security services to the sound of silence from the world’s media.”

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Timely Reminders

"Those who crusade, not for God in themselves, but against the devil in others, never succeed in making the world better, but leave it either as it was, or sometimes perceptibly worse than what it was, before the crusade began. By thinking primarily of evil we tend, however excellent our intentions, to create occasions for evil to manifest itself."
-- Aldous Huxley

"The only war that matters is the war against the imagination. All others are subsumed by it."
-- Diane DiPrima, "Rant", from Pieces of a Song.

"It is difficult
to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
for lack
of what is found there"
-- William Carlos Williams, "Asphodel, That Greeny Flower"