Ten years ago, there was hope in Israel that through dialogue and negotiation, it might be possible to reach some sort of agreement with Arab leaders. Under the regime of George Bush, Iran’s two major enemies, Taliban ruled Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein ruled Iraq, were wiped out which strengthened the power of Iran in the region. Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni told the people of her nation that “we live in a neighborhood in which sometimes dialogue–in a situation where you have brought sanctions and you then shift to dialogue–is liable to be interpreted as weakness.” When asked if she would support Obama’s idea of discussions with Iran without preconditions, her response was, “the answer is no.”
Israel and Bush have taken the stance that any discussions with Iran is a sign of weakness. Ironically, during the 1970s, her party and leaders engaged in dialogue with Egypt which eventually ended Israel’s conflict with that nation. The current Israel refusal to discuss issues leads no place other than continued hostility and conflict. Barack Obama will undertake to assist Israel despite its own failed policies of silence. The world must engage in discussions with Iran– without preconditions. Silence only means death and destruction.
Posted in Barack Obama, Democrats, Human Rights, Islam, Israel, Judaism, Liberals, Muslims, Peace, Politics, Republicans, United States, US Foreign Policy, War, World News
Tagged Iran, Israel, Livni, Obama
The exist of Prime Minister Olmert will be accompanied by the entry of Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni who will soon become the new prime minister. The undecided question is whether Livni will work toward building bridges of peace with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas. As a first step Livni met with Labor Party chairman Ehud Barak who is expected to play a key role in any coalition government that emerges provided Livni and he can put aside their personal conflicts with one another. Barak has been assured of a “full partnership” with Livni.
Creating a coalition government that is strong enough to withstand pressure from right wing groups which oppose meaningful compromises with Palestinian leaders is the greatest challenge confronting Livni. She is still attempting to cope with the apparent anger of Shaul Mofaz’s announcement that after losing the fight to become the party leader, he is leaving the political world.
Israel’s Foreign Minister Tzipi Livini won a closely fought battle as to who would represent the ruling Kadima party and become the new prime minister. Her opponent, Shaul Mofaz, has agreed not to contest contest and he also made clear there was no intention on his part to seek an important position in her Cabinet. He will seek to find other ways to contribute to the success of his nation. However, the pivotal ultra-Orthodox Shas party intended to make strong demands to have its agenda part of the new government. Livni made clear during her campaign to become the Kadima leader that she was not prepared to pay “any price” to form a coalition government and might resort to holding new elections.
Livni has been working with Prime Minister Olmert in seeking to build bridges to Palestinian leader President Abbas in order to secure an agreement with Palestinians. An ominous message to Livni came from right wing Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu who urged a new general election which he hopes will provide him an opportunity to gain sufficient numbers in order to organize a new coalition.
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, rumored to be the next prime minister, told reporters her nation needs a unity government to avoid problems that eventually could result in a 3rd Intifada. If she does become the new prime minister creating a government including all parties would be among her goals. “I believe that what we called in the past left and right is something that belongs in the past.” However, she was equally insistent international pressure could be dangerous and result in the emergence of a 3rd Intifada. Lvni believes Palestinian Authority leaders and those from Israel must resolve differences and create a two nation reality in the region.
She compared the current situation to 2000 when President Clinton tried to broker a peace agreement before he left office. Now President Bush is attempting to do the same thing and Livni fears placing tight deadlines to achieve peace will invariably result in more problems.
Unfortunately, Foreign Minister Livni, has yet to address key issue such as West Bank settlements and the desire of Palestinians for east Jerusalem as their capital. At some point, Israel leaders must confront the realities of peace.
Posted in Human Rights, Islam, Israel, Judaism, Muslims, Peace, Politics, US Foreign Policy, War, World News
Tagged Israel, Livni, Palestine, US pressure