Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Friday, May 02, 2003

Wait just a minute there.

Per Stig Møller [FM of Denmark] said that the the Palestinians' appointment of Abbas as government leader, and the sharp tempering of Yasser Arafat's powers, represented a key concession to the Israelis.

‘The Palestinians have delivered the goods. Now we'll have to see if Sharon can show some results,’ said Møller.

The Foreign Minister explained that there were rich possibilities for Israel to show its will for peace. The country could halt settlements in the occupied areas, and open its borders to give Palestinians better opportunities for work. Israel could also approve more money for support to the Palestinian treasury.

The approval and appointment prove nothing. He calls for concrete concessions from Israel while we still only have words and promises from the Palestinians. That is not the way this is to work. Abu Mazen must prove he is more than a title and that his cabinet is loyal to him and not to Arafat. On paper Arafat's power has been diminished but I will believe it when we see evidence of it. When terrorists are arrested and tried and truly jailed, when terrorist groups are disarmed, the PA Charter amended and the language in the media in schools begins to change we will know that the Palestinians have chosen the path of peace. Just making some gestures in an unelected Parliament mean very little at this point.

Al Aqsa and Hamas claimed responsibility for the recent attacks. Let's see Abu Mazen act and we will know that reform is possible. To call for Israel to start making concrete concessions before that is very premature.

< email | 5/02/2003 11:43:00 AM | link

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