A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Friday, August 20, 2010

Direct Talks to Resume?

The US has announced that direct Israeli-Palestinian talks will resume in Washington September, if Israel and the Palestinian Authority accept the US invitation. Israel has accepted, and the PA sounds positive.

While talks are generally a good thing, does anyone think anything will come of them? Apparently the goal is to set a one year time frame for concluding an agreement. Can either the present hardline Israeli government or the present weak Palestinian Authority find common ground on that deadline?

Of course, I hope there is progress. But I'm not even all that confident that something won't happen in the next couple of weeks to torpedo the talks.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I just find it incredibly hard to believe that either side of the table has the ability to bring along their respective constituencies given their half century of well-earned mutual distrust. How do you bootstrap trust when the opposing parties have proven themselves so untrustworthy over the years? (That was the major stumbling block for me over Abunimah's "One Country" -- but even a much less radical settlement seems just as unlikely. See also US-Iran relations, where both sides would stand to benefit substantially from a rapprochement if only they could get over that hump.)