Written By: John Sullivan

The Palestinian terror organization Hamas, in their refusal to recognize Israel’s right to exist, is determined to railroad any peace treaty that may be attained from talks that started this Thursday. Dismissing Hamas is not an easy adventure, this week they executed back to back attacks on Israelis in the West Bank. Many analyst say though that the only way for U.S. led talks to succeed is for Palestinians to ostracize the terror group, but they cannot expect to succeed if they do not

Jordan and Egypt are both involved in the renewed middle east peace talks; here to represent Egypt is president Hosni Mubarak and here to represent Jordan is King Abdullah II. Both countries recognize a need for peace in the middle east, in order for the peace to work many agreements one side or the other will not prefer must be made. One consensus that must be made is the fate of the Gaza strip, among the endeavors that must be taken to possibly bring peace are a prisoner exchange, an end to the blockade, and a reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah (the rival of Hamas).

According to Hosni Mubarak “The Palestinians cannot make peace with a house divided. If Gaza is excluded from the framework of peace, it will remain a source of conflict, undermining any final settlement,”
On Tuesday, Hamas launched an attack that resulted in four Israelis being shot and killed in the West Bank near Hebron. Hamas also took responsibility for a roadside attack in the same area on Wednesday, only one Israeli was wounded in the attack. Back to back attacks like this are likely going to continue and possibly escalate
With attacks taking place, and a war that has been raging on since the end of World War Two, it is not only a political issue we are faced with but a human rights. Regardless of the harm Obama has done to our country he must be commended for immediately getting the ball rolling. At the beginning of his administration Obama made former Sen. George Mitchell his special envoy for Middle East peace. With previous Presidents, peace talks have been put off until later in their administration and time inevitably ran out. Obama immediately aiming to start talks about middle east peace early in his administration was a wise move increasing the amount of allotted time to get something done.
Of course with the peace talks that are currently underway many problems are looming that could inevitably stall any actions. As Previously mentioned, Hamas is actively attacking Israelis, but also the settlement construction that is currently on hold happens to be a key issue. If concessions are met with the settlement, the atmosphere for a peace settlement to be reached is ripe with possibility. Lately violence is down, the economy is up, and settlement activity is low. The catalyst to the possibility of peace will be dependent on how hard the US pushes to make it happen.
For this to work, The White House must do more than simply host a few dinners, a speech or two, and photo ops. Stephen P. Cohen, president of the Institute for Middle East Peace & Development, says Obama should “exploit this moment of maximum leverage by making a dramatic proposal or initiative that breaks new ground.” The question is, with Obama’s lack of experience, is he going to be able to do the what is necessary or is he going to fold under pressure.

Sources for this Article:
Fox News
The Christian Science Monitor

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