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“Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage.” Dwight D. Eisenhower

The Syria-Israeli Peace Process

Posted by Atilla89 on May 31, 2008

A few days ago I mentioned that I talked with Mr Dor Shapira about the chances of peace between Israel and Syria in regards to Israel returning the Golan Heights. I also linked you to this article which summed up the peace talks in a couple of sentences:

Cynics might also suggest that Israel’s beleaguered prime minister, Ehud Olmert, is using talks with Syria as a diversion from his troubles with the police in connection with allegations of corruption and money laundering.

A new peace process could divert international attention and persuade the major powers that making peace is more important than bringing Hariri’s killers to justice [Syria].

Now I’ve just looked at another article which confirms what I quoted above and also gives a few new interesting angles. It should be obvious now that even though Assad and Olmert are trying to get some sort of ‘peace’ and use it for their own political advantage its not going to happen as there are just to many factors that are coming into play.

First, not many people both in Israel and in the international community believe that Syria will actually honor any sort of agreement with Israel. Why should they? Most of their support comes from Iran which is absolutely committed to Israel’s destruction. Syria is Shiite, while most of the Middle East is Sunni, who else would they turn to if they isolate themselves from Iran, which is what Israel is asking for.

Second:

Assad reminds Israelis far more of Arafat than of Sadat. So far, Assad has refused even to hold direct negotiations with Israel, preferring Turkish interlocutors. Give me the Golan, he is in effect saying, and then we’ll see what kind of peace develops between us.

Not only is this guaranteed to have no positive outcome of the negotiations, it doesn’t take into account the fact that a lot of Israelis actually like the Golan with its natural beauty far more then they like the urban wasteland that is Gaza or the vast deserts of the Sinai.

View of the Golan Heights

View of the Golan Heights

Of coarse the most pressing issue of giving back the Golan Heights is the military strategic value that they hold. If Israel has no guarantee that Syria won’t break its links with terrorists, who says they won’t go back to their old game of shooting at Israeli civilians and soldiers alike from the Heights?

View of Syria from an Israeli Bunker

The article summarizes the situation quite nicely which shows just how correct the quote at the top is.

Israel’s Olmert hopes that peace negotiations will deflect attention from his own woes — allegations of corruption dating in part from his days as Jerusalem’s mayor. Other Israelis, though, are wondering how helping Assad destroy Lebanon and escape justice can possibly be confused for Israel’s national interest, let alone for a peace process.

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One Response to “The Syria-Israeli Peace Process”

  1. […] The Syria-Israeli Peace ProcessA few days ago I mentioned that I talked with Mr Dor Shapira about the chances of peace between Israel and Syria in regards to Israel returning the Golan Heights. I also linked you to this article which summed up the peace talks in a … […]

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