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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 7/31/13

Main Stumbling Blocks in Palestinian/Israeli Conflict Won't be Overcome in Latest Round of "Peace Talks"

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Then there's the fundamentalist Christian right in the U.S. that reflexively supports Israel believing Israel's rebirth in 1948 somehow signifies the Jews are "the favored people" and the sign forecasting the 2 nd coming of Christ.     

Since Israel's success in the 1967 six day war where it conquered and subsequently occupied the West Bank, Jerusalem, Gaza and the Golan Heights, all its actions since have precluded any chance for negotiating peace bringing a two state solution creating a Palestinian state.

It would seem unnecessary at this late date to have to mention the main stumbling blocks in this 46 year old saga, (since 1967) but again all resistance to an agreement rests solely with policies and actions executed by the Israeli's with the unwavering support of the U.S.

Most people are aware of the settlement program Israel initiated after the 67' war in the West Bank (as well as in Gaza before it unilaterally closed down all settlements in that Palestinian enclave). Yet many may not know that there are now over 400,000 Israeli's (mostly Orthodox Jews who hate the Palestinians and believe they are squatters on land given to the Jews some 3500 years ago) in settlements throughout the West Bank, which are still expanding.

Not only are Palestinian families living on land they have owned for generations forcibly evicted and their homes bulldozed but their livelihoods decimated with the destruction of mature olive groves and grape orchards which are a main source of income.

Then there's the open air prison that is Gaza, the Israeli embargo of goods entering and leaving, Israel's blockade restricting shipping from entering the port as well as limiting Gaza fishermen from trolling in seas much beyond the Gaza coast. And with Hamas being the political entity governing Gaza since it was elected over Fatah in 2006 but subsequently branded as terrorists and completely removed from the negotiating process with Israel since that time, (yet controlling territory [Gaza] that would be part of any new Palestinian state), any "final" settlement with Israel would be doomed without their participation in the process, (and notably excluded in the current "negotiations" in Washington).

Let's not leave out the Israeli takeover of Jerusalem, making it the Israeli capitol and thus placing severe restrictions on Muslims in Islam's 2 nd most holy city next to Mecca in Saudi Arabia.    

Lastly the "right of return", a severe sticking point for Palestinians, whereby those Palestinian's who had their homes and lands confiscated as part of the U.N's establishment of Israel in 1948, be allowed to return to the property they or their forebears left or be compensated if they are unable to return or if return is not feasible.

Naturally, all the above contribute to the intractability of the Israeli/Palestinian divide which certainly won't begin to be overcome in this latest round of "peace talks."



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