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What Can, and What Cannot, be Achieved in the Middle East

erschienen in der Publikation "Jahrbuch für internationale Sicherheitspolitik 2003" (ISBN: 3-8132-0813-3) - Dezember 2003

Abstract:

The recent virtual collapse of the US-sponsored "Road Map" for peace in the Middle East raises the issue of whether the plan - well intentioned as it might have been - was perhaps too ambitious. As the failed 2000-2001 Camp David Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in 2000-2001 show, the gaps between both sides are still too wide. Arafat’s refusal to accept the Clinton-Barak package offered to him at Camp David, suggested to many Israelis that the Palestinians are not yet truly reconciled to the existence of Israel; this, and the Palestinian recourse to suicide bombing, has further hardened the Israeli position.
The Road Map also envisaged constant US monitoring, at the highest, i.e. presidential, level, of every step in the process. As has been shown in the past, no US President can commit all his political energy to the daily details of a complex process on an almost daily basis.

These difficulties point to what may eventually become the default option in the Middle East. As in Bosnia, Kosovo, Cyprus and Kashmir, in the absence of a final status solution, stopgap pragmatic measures, aimed at stabilization, de-escalation of violence and the slow building of trust, may be the only realistic aims. Perhaps the same will apply to the Middle East as well.

Eigentümer und Herausgeber: Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung | Roßauer Lände 1, 1090 Wien
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