söndag 21 november 2010

På samma sida?

En läsvärd artikel om relationerna mellan Israel och USA av David Horovitz, Jerusalem Post.
Editors Notes: Didn’t we use to be on the same side?
Much more troubling, however, is the growing sense in these past few weeks that the shared interests and values that constituted the basis for those earlier, heartfelt personal relationships is crumbling. As our two leaderships have haggled (and that, unfortunately, is the only word for it) over the terms of a new settlement freeze, our alliance seems to be shriveling into a cold, adversarial contest.In the past, guiding the American-Israel approach to peacemaking with the Palestinians was a wealth of shared goodwill and historical precedent. We were partners, trying together to find the balance of carrots and sticks, to perfect the framework, that would finally draw the immensely, sometimes violently reluctant Palestinians into reducing their maximalist demands to viable terms we all could live with.
US-Israel relations were not an uninterrupted love fest down the decades. The Clinton- Rabin connection was exceptional. Some of the leadership pairings really did take a strong dislike to each other. There were always arguments and disagreements and stark policy differences.But implicit in the partnership, underpinning it, was recognition of the fact that the Jewish state was revived in 1948 because its leadership unhappily accepted a partition of British Mandatory Palestine that left the most resonant places in Jewish history outside our sovereign borders, while an intended Arab entity was not established because the Arab leaderships preferred to try and strangle Israel. Implicit, too, was the fact that Israel, the world’s only Jewish state and the region’s only democracy, had been forced to fight war after war for its survival in the face of implacable enemies bent on its destruction, to endure unprecedented terrorist onslaughts, and to overcome relentless attempts at economic boycott and diplomatic sanction.It was recognized that the territory Israel’s critics now asserted lay at the heart of the conflict – territory to which Israel has an incontrovertible historic claim, and which Israel captured when forced into war – was not even held by Israel between 1948 and 1967. Rather, that very territory was the launching point of Arab efforts to destroy the country.Also implicit in the partnership was the awareness that, while some Israeli governments are more reluctant than others to trade land for peace, no Israeli government has balked at that equation when a credible, dependable Arab peace partner made an appearance. In fact, in recent years, all Israeli governments have shown a readiness to embrace that equation even when the ostensible Palestinian peace partner has fallen some distance short of credibility and dependability.TODAY, THOUGH, that history, those fundamentals, that peacemaking context seem at risk of being forgotten.Negotiating with the Palestinians has proven extraordinarily frustrating these past two decades – their leadership to date has been frequently disingenuous, often murderous and serially rejectionist. But we insist on trying afresh, because we need an accommodation to retain a Jewish, democratic Israel. We do not want to have to live by the sword. We nurture the faint hope that, along with its undoubted desire for statehood, the current Palestinian leadership can yet be persuaded of the virtues of reconciliation ­ the benefits of a future, as Clinton put it in his Times op-ed, ³where cooperation triumphs over conflict."But now, before we can even get to grips with the complexities of negotiating with the Palestinians, we find ourselves head-to-head with Washington, locked in tense negotiating sessions where previously we were often locked in step. Instead of working together to identify areas of leverage, pressure points and incentives for the Palestinians, we are looking for those same opportunities and vulnerabilities in each other.
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