Why Now May be the Right Time for a Peace Effort

The following excerpts come from the recent International Crisis Group report published under the auspices of CALME American leader Robert Malley.

[And yet] This desultory state of affairs is an important reason why an urgent, ambitious international effort is required. Years of culpable neglect have crippled forces of pragmatism throughout the region and made the achievement of peace immeasurably more difficult. Another several years of waiting would only make it harder still. Some promising ingredients exist: the possibility of a Palestinian national unity government, Syria’s repeated call for a resumption of negotiations, increased eagerness on the part of Arab regimes for a renewed peace process and even Israel’s search for an alternative way forward after the collapse of its unilateralist experiment.

Moreover, the absence of initiative is itself a policy choice that inevitably will have a significant negative effect. Perpetuation of the Arab-Israeli conflict, with all the anger it generates, fuels extremist, jihadi movements in the Muslim world; intensifies animosity toward the West and the U.S. in particular; radicalises Muslim populations in Western Europe; discredits pro-Western governments; deepens the damaging divide between the Islamic and Western worlds; and, as both Syrian and Israeli officials have warned, sows the seeds of the next Arab-Israeli war. Resolving the conflict clearly would not be a sufficient condition to tackle such deep-seated problems; but it is, on all available evidence, a necessary one…

The Middle East is immersed in its worst crisis in years with no stable resolution in sight. Observers and analysts are quick to point out that circumstances are far from ideal for an Arab-Israeli initiative. They are right. But time for a negotiated settlement is quickly running out.

To read the full report, click here.

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Explore posts in the same categories: CALME Luminaries, Israel, Middle East Peace, Palestinians, U.S. Role

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