The USA once more brokers peace talks in the Middle East between Israel and the Palestinians. After decades of negotiations, everyone knows the issues. The bargaining chips -- recognition of the Jewish state, right of return, prisoners, compensation, territory, settlements, demilitarization -- even for those of us half a world away from the action, are all plain to see on this high-stakes poker table.
When I traveled to Israel and through the West Bank this year, I got first-hand confirmation from both Jewish Israelis and Palestinians that the polls I keep hearing about are accurate: people from both sides want the peace and security that could come with a two-state solution. They want a chance for a life where conflict is not always the ugly elephant in the room.
The problem is not the warmongers among the negotiators. There are none. Of Benjamin Netanyahu, Mahmoud Abbas and the American moderators, none will say they want a perpetuation of the conflict. The differences here are what peace looks like.
It seems that for the Palestinian leadership, peace means, at...More >>