Wednesday, November 01, 2006


There's an op-ed article in The New York Times today entitled "Pause for Peace," written by Ahmed Yousef, a senior advisor to the Palestinian prime minister. He suggests that the Palestinians are ready to commit to what he calls a "hudna," which in Arabic refers to a 10-year cease fire where the parties work out their differences without using violence. Here's the link:

He says this is based in the teachings of the Koran, and that it's worked in other countries. He also cites the Western example of the IRA in Northern Ireland, who have committed to now work to make Northern Ireland independent of Great Britain through only political means, and have renounced violence as a method they will employ.

This sounds like a great compromise to me--and not even a compromise, really, just a great way of trying to deal with the situation. If neither side can do any real negotiating because greivances are being added daily, how can they ever come to a resolution? But if both sides agree to put down their weapons and work on a solution, it seems much more likely that this will be able to happen.

Of course, it's difficult if Israel will not budge on its desire to get rid of all the Palestinians and take their land away...but at thsi point it doesn't look like they're doing that so much as just making it impossible for Palestinians to thrive by severely limiting their ability to travel outside their villages and blocking them from necessary resources through checkpoints and the wall they're building.

Hopefully the world community can see the sense of this Palestinian offer of hudna, take them up on it, and require Israel to participate in this cease fire in a fair way.

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