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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Friday, August 04, 2006


peace in the middle east

posted by Aziz P. at Friday, August 04, 2006 permalink View blog reactions
Below, the outlines of a workable plan for peace in the middle east:

A Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders, with minor rectifications agreed upon between Palestine and Israel.

· Palestinians giving up the right of return and Israel reciprocating by removing its settlements in the West Bank, again with rectifications as mutually agreed. Those displaced on both sides would receive compensation from the international community.

· King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia unambiguously reconfirming his 2002 pledge that the Arab world is prepared to enter into full normal relations with Israel upon its withdrawal from the lands occupied in 1967.

· Egypt and Saudi Arabia working with the Palestinian Authority to put together a government along the lines of the 18-point agreement reached between Hamas and Fatah prisoners in Israeli jails in June. This government would negotiate for the Authority.

· Deployment, as part of a cease-fire, of a robust international force in southern Lebanon.

· Deployment of another international force to facilitate and supervise traffic to and from Gaza and the West Bank.

· Designation of Jerusalem as the shared capital of Israel and Palestine, with appropriate international guarantees of freedom of movement and civic life in the city.

Outline courtesy of Brent Scowcroft. Agreeable? Possible? Practical? Just? Discuss.


The only problem I see in Snowcroft's analysis is that it rests in a sort of naivetee: the belief that the Palestinian leadership can be counted on to live by this.

Another is the weakness of the Israeli leadership to live by it, but we need to face facts: Palestine is not as yet a democracy, is still ruled primarily by a corrupt regime that rules as much through fear as anything else. They're a step above a dictatorship, and may in fact move toward being a democracy but aren't one yet.

I suspect that this plan cannot work until the Palestinians have another 10 or so years to develop into a real democracy.


aziz, this is a good long term plan, but i want something more immediate.
people are dying.
the UN resolution will not work in my estimation.

you know i have a commenter on my blog who is at very least a strong hizb' sympathizer.
And he consistanly articulated nasr'ullah's positions on my blog before nasr'ullah announced them on al Jazeerha.

i think the hostage/prisoner exchange is key. that is what started this. the prisoner exchange allows both sides a graceful climbdown, each side gets something. i don't think israel will leave leb until the int'nat'l force is in place. that will have to be worked out. but the prisoner exchange is what hizb' said it wanted. both hizb' and israel have backed themselves into corners with escalating retoric.
this would give them a chance to stand down.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.