ATTN especially Americans:Got a copy of the "Roadmap" letter from my Senator.Quote April 30, 2003The PresidentThe White HouseWashington, D.C. 20500Dear Mr. President: We share with you the hope that new possibilities will be presented for peace and security in the Middle East for both Israelis and Palestinians. As you work to resume peace negotiations between Israel and Palesinians, we write to express our support for the guiding principles you outlined in your June 24th speech. These principles are the establishment of a new Palestinian leadership that is transparent, accountable, free from the taint of terrorism, willing and able to dismantly terrorist networks and committed to overhauling the Palestinian security apparatus so that it truly fights terrorism, rather than engages in it. While recent political changes in the Palestinian Authority are a positive step, it is only the start of what is needed for the Palestinian people to begin to see the realization of their political aspirations. Many are urging you to short circuit this process and to focus on timelines, rather than the benchmarks of real performance. Actions – not just promises – are necessary for real progress. As we have learned from recent history, without a new, empowered Palestinian leadership that is firmly committed to fighting terror, there is no one with whom to negotiate and no point in making unilateral concessions. The United States has developed a level of credibility and trust with all parties in the region which no other country shares. In addition, the parties themselves must engage in order for progress to be lasting. Adding other parties, who do not have the confidence of one or more of the principles, will be counter-productive. In summary, Mr. President, we share your belief that real changes in the Palestinian leadership provide the possibility to once again explore opportunities to bring real peace to that troubled region of the world. Only by holding fast to those principles you outlined in your June 24th speech can we hope to end the 30 months of terror that have led to nothing but misery for both Israelis and Palestinians. Sincerely, (signed by 88 Senators; a separate letter was sent by the House)A couple things to note. First, the second paragraph talks exclusively about things the Palestinians need to do; no mention is made of anything Israel should do -- not freezing settlements; not recognizing the Geneva Convention in the Occupied Territories, and thus ending collective punishment measures and destruction of civilian property and lives; nothing.Second, in the third paragraph there is a reference to there being "no point in making unilateral concessions." Obviously, the learned Senators had presented their laundry list of unilateral Palestinian concessions that they insisted upon, so clearly they see some point in making unilateral concessions, contrary to their statement. What they mean is really that there is "no point in Israel making unilateral concessions," but they apparently forgot that Israel is an entity separate from the United States that they purportedly represent -- an understandable mistake, given this letter.Third, the fourth paragraph talks about the US and the parties in the region "engaging" (?), but notes that "adding other parties ... will be counter-productive." I guess this means that nations and groups whose legislatures cannot be relied upon to sign onto letters that insist that Israel be given carte blanche should be excluded from participation in any negotiations over the Israel/Palestine situation.So the important things to take from this letter, I think, are that (1) the US government is not by any stretch of the imagination an "even-handed" arbitrator, as it is so ubiquitously portrayed in American "news" media, and (2) the US is likely to be playing the role of the guy at the fraternity party who watches the door while a drunk coed gets raped within, by keeping other parties from being "counter-productively" added to the process.So why do the Palestinians participate at all in this farce? I'd guess it's because, without it, they serve unendingly as Israel's punching bag, and their expectations have been vilely and criminally lowered to the point that having a couple more beers before being raped is as much as they, as a coed at a frat party, can hope for. It's clear to me that Palestinian sucide bombings against Israelis are senseless violence: the Israelis are prepared for them, both in defensive measures and in being willing to accept them as a cost of getting what they want. It would make a lot more sense for Palestinian suicide bombers to target the US Congress.
Last edited by Marsden
on June 22nd, 2003, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.