Friday, June 18, 2004

Is the Intifada Finally Over?

There have been strong arguements by respected bloggers to support the idea that the Intifada in Palestine is fizzling out. The consensus seems to have been based upon the success of the defensive barrier Israel erected as a primary reason - perhaps combined with Arafat's enforced isolation in his compound. Whatever the reasons, it appears at least to be true.

In an interview with Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz yesterday, Arafat indicated two things I really never thought we would hear from him - if the reports are true anyway.

Arafat was asked, "if he understood that "Israel has to keep being a Jewish state"?

"Definitely," he replied."

Ha'aretz also indicates Arafat is backing away from the single most contentious item of any peace plan to date - the right of return to Israel of up to 4 million Palestinian Arabs. Arafat seems to be conceding that "right of return" for ALL Palestinian Arabs would change the Jewish character of Israel and is not realistic. Arafat does want Israel to take responsibility for the plight of certain Palestinian Arabs.

Honestly, I don't know what this all means. Perhaps Dan Darling can set up a special Winds of Change briefing (if he hasn't already) on this.

If it means what I think it means, then maybe the possibility of peace in Palestine IS possible in my lifetime. How wonderful would that be?


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