Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Peace talks, yet again

Russia Today September 14, 2010
'US - Israel's partner in crime, not a referee'

Israeli and Palestinian leaders are holding a new round of direct talks. The main issue being discussed is whether a current freeze on Israeli settlement-building in the West Bank will be extended. Palestinian President Abbas threatens to walk out on the negotiations if construction continues. For more on this, RT talks to Omar Barghouti, an activist from the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.

no. 2: RT America September 02, 2010
Is Israel-Palestinian peace attainable?
Peace negotiations have started in Washington DC between Israelis and Palestinians. President Barack Obama held a series of high-stakes meetings with Israeli and Arab leaders. As negotiations continue today, is there a chance the negotiations today could work?


Is Israel manipulating media?
RT America June 01, 2010

In many ways, public opinion is shaped by the media, so will the media coverage of the attack affect public opinion of Israel. The mainstream media has been pro Israel in the past but will that change now after the conflict on the Mediterranean? Danny Schechter says that Israel has targeted conservative media in America, saying that Israel is the victim not the Flotilla participants.

The verbiage above is from Russia Today. I am not optimistic about the peace talks. I also think most observers here in the US, both the establishment press and people in general, have tuned them out, in part because nobody really expects them to be successful, even if many(maybe most?) Americans might have difficulty understanding Barghouti's point of view, and may just chalk it up to Palistinian intransigence, or shrug about how difficult it is to understand the middle east.

I'm guessing very few Americans would easily accept the possibility that US foreign policy is an obstacle to peace. It's hard not to wonder if the only reason these talks are even happening is because of the Memorial Day weekend flotilla raid, and the need Israel and the US have to seem to respond with a peace overture, and the need Fatah has to seem to reciprocate. So, they all go through the motions. I remember in 2000 I was under the impression that Arafat was walking away from a pretty good deal, but later I learned that most of the land swaps was of desert for arable, cultivated land that had been taken by settlers, in exchange for desert.

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