I am wholeheartedly congratulating the Palestinian people for finally winning the United Nations General Assembly’s implicit recognition as a sovereign state when it got the vote to become a nonmember state. I am so touched by this historical event.
In the long view of history, the vote last Thursday by the United Nations General Assembly may come to be regarded as a belated and merely preliminary step to Palestinian statehood. But the overwhelming vote to grant Palestine the status of a nonmember observer state (the same status that the Vatican, for example, enjoys in the UN system) was greeted by jubilation in the various parts of fragmented Palestine, and seen as historic around the world.
By Shlomo Ben Ami
The exchange of prisoners between enemies is often a prelude to political reconciliation. Unfortunately, the recent exchange between Israel and Hamas, in which the Islamist organization gained the lion’s share of more than 1,000 prisoners in exchange for the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, does not augur well for the chances of an Israeli-Palestinian peace.
By Shlomo Ben Ami
The somber spectacle of Israel’s isolation during the United Nations debate on Palestinian statehood marks the political tsunami that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s critics warned would arrive if Israel did not propose a bold peace initiative. But more importantly, the speeches at the UN General Assembly by the two rivals, Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, showed that any initiative to bring the parties back to the negotiating table might turn out to be futile.
By Amb. Menashe Bar-on
The truth is often a rare commodity in the Middle East. It can be hidden behind layers of mendacity and myths, distractions and deceptions. But some truths are so obvious that they cannot be ignored. One such reality exists regarding relations between Israel and the Palestinians: No peace agreement will ever be reached and no [...]