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The So Called 'road Map To Peace' Looks In Many Ways More Like A 'road Map To War'. How Far Would You Agree With This Assessment Of Us Efforts To Settle The Palestinian Question?

2845 words - 11 pages

On September 17 2002 the Bush Administration made the unprecedented move of acknowledging the Palestinian right to a state - the first time any US government had done so, and with the backing of the UN, the EU and Russia (the 'quartet') the 'Road Map to Peace' was shaped - a plan that would result in an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. It is no secret that the US have been a strong supporter of Israel. The legitimacy of a US-backed peace plan, then, can be seriously questioned. The 'Road Map to Peace' is clearly biased, and while Israel ignore and refuse to adhere to elements of the 'Road Map' the US look the other way and in some instances actually validate Israel's actions. The peace plan puts a high amount of pressure on Palestinians who clearly don't have the strength or resources to carry out the plan. The plan states that Palestinian militant groups must disarm, but if the Palestinian Authority (PA) tried to enforce this it could lead to civil war. The road map specifies that by 2005, the Palestinians would have their own state. It is now nearing 2006 and any vision of a Palestinian state is looking more remote as Israel usurp more land by the day. Since the introduction of the road map the country has continued to see the endless cycle of suicide bombings and Israeli retaliation - the violence that permeates everyday life in Israel/Palestine, but no road to peace.Only war.The aim of the Road Map to Peace is to end the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory that began in 1967, in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions 242 and 338. The Road Map is divided into three phases- the first phase states that Palestine are to cease all acts of violence, and Israel are to immediately withdraw from settlements built since March 2001. Israeli forces are also to withdraw from the Occupied Territories. During phase two, which was expected to be implemented by December 2003, a Palestinian state was to emerge, and by 2005 phase three would see a peace treaty to settle the most contentious aspects of the conflict, namely control of Jerusalem, the Palestinian capital, and the right of return for Palestinian refugees. At the present time the 'road' to peace has only been travelled so far as a little way into phase one.From the outset the road map was internationally criticised. Even a US official believed that the odds of success were 'not that good'. The language has been described as 'vague' and 'non constraining on Israel', it does not specify where the road map is leading and hence offers no incentive for completion. The International Crisis Group (ICG) have said that elements of the peace plan 'lack definition', and each element could easily provoke 'interminable disputes between the two sides'. Furthermore, the ICG claim the peace plan does not even offer a cessation of conflict. Rabbi M. Lerner asserts that another major weakness in the road map is the provision that there be an end to all violence. This, he claims, allows...

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