Tag Archives: Livni

Is “Victory” In Gaza A “Defeat” For Israel?

Israel’s armed forces move relentlessly through the streets of Gaza blasting and killing anyone or obstacle in their way hoping the operation will ensure their nation has achieved “peace.” In the wake of the IDF lies the bodies of hundreds of innocent men, women, and children whose safety and security was deemed of lesser importance than the security of Israeli soldiers. President Abbas of the Palestinian Authority understands more than any Israeli official the folly of the war in Gaza which, in effect, has done incredible damage to moderate Palestinians by making them come across as ineffectual and “cowards” who take second place to the “brave members of Hamas.” The Israel government in one horrible explosion of hate and anger has given Hamas power and prestige in the entire Arab world.

The Palestinian Authority representative at the UN, Riyad Mansour accused Israel of war crimes and demanded the UN dispatch troops, if necessary, to ensure there is peace in Gaza. “The current situation is untenable and cannot be allowed to continue.” His government is desperately trying to do something to end killing in Gaza before the entire Palestinian nation shifts over to support for Hamas. Mansour accused Israel Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni of pretending to be interested in a diplomatic solution but using time in order to allow the IDF to continue its operations of death and destruction.

There is no question the IDF invasion reduced the possibility of rocket attacks on Israel, but at what price was this “victory” achieved? A major problem of Israeli leadership is seeking short term solutions rather than grasping the need for a permanent solution that ensures peace for their nation. What if there is an election and Hamas wins in both Gaza and the West Bank? What then, Israel? An invasion of the West Bank?

Gaza Opening-To Be Or Not To Be?

The Un Human Rights Council urged Israel to lift the blockade on the Gaza Strip and made a long list of things the Israeli government could do in order to restore some semblance of order to the people of Gaza. However, there was no call on Hamas to ensure no more rockets fall on Israeli soil nor any demands that Hamas respect the rights of members of Fatah in the strip. An ongoing problem of UN groups is to view the situation through the lens of Hamas rather than recognizing it is an interactive process in which each side plays a role in keeping the conflict from being resolved.

Israel Foreign Minister Livni warned there would be no peace or end to the Gaza blockade unless there is a halt to rocket attacks into Israel. She went further to emphasize, “Israel cannot accept Hamas rule in Gaza.” Unfortunately, Israel can not dictate which group is in power within Gaza, but it can assist President Abbas by resolving the West Bank problem by evacuating the area.

Israeli FM Livini–We Know What We Are Doing!

Forty years have passed since Israel forces swept to victory in the 1967 war and took possession of the West Bank and thousands of Palestinians. Forty years have passed with negotiations and discussions and promises and assurances by both Palestinians and Israelis that if left alone they will figure out a solution to their problems. Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni spoke openly about her hope newly elected president Barack Obama will keep his hands off the Israel-Palestinian conflict. “You don’t need now to do anything dramatic about it. The situation is calm. We have these peace talks.” If she wins the general election in February she will become the new prime minister of Israel. Of course, if she loses, Benjamin Netanyahu who opposes giving up land or control of east Jerusalem will become the new prime minister.

Livni emphasized there was no need for outside groups to “bridge the gap between us. Don’t put new ideas on the table. We know what we are doing.” In response to a question concerning return of Palestinian refugees, Livni said they had left in 1948 and it was no longer an Israeli problem and that “not even one of them” will be allowed to return.

The comments of Foreign Minister Livni reflect the detachment from reality of some Israel political leaders. They have been talking for years without much progress. They NEED NEW IDEAS ON THE TABLE because the existing ones are not satisfying either party. A blunt statement such as “not even one of them” can return is certainly not an expression of peace that will attract the attention of Palestinian leaders. Sorry, Ms. Livni, both sides need new ideas.

Israel Leader Says No To Iran Dialogue

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.

Olmert Talks Honest- Ignored By Supporters

Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s comments that his nation had to accept the reality of 1967 borders and a Palestinian presence in Jerusalem has been greeted by silence or disbelief among many political leaders in his nation. However, European Union envoy Marc Otte, told the Jerusalem Post, Olmert’s comments represented political courage. “Everyone who has been engaged in the negotiations is bound to come to that sort of conclusion. I am encouraged that the Israeli leadership is willing to face the challenges.” Unfortunately, Foreign Minister Tzip Livni, who most probably will become the next prime minister said she did not feel compelled to agree with the Olmert proposal.

There were some initial claims that Palestinians had rejected Olmert’s proposal but Otte said there was no validity to that assertion. At least one Israel leader is dealing with reality rather than with rhetoric.

Livni Opposes PM Olmert’s Palestinian Peace Plan

Israel Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni made clear she opposes efforts by Prime Minister Olmert to reach a peace agreement with President Abbas of the Palestinian Authority. She told French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, “I do not believe in far-reaching proposals and an attempt to expedite matters, especially in light of the political situation.” Olmert told the French foreign minister of his frustration because Abbas would not agree to his proposal which indicated a desire to accept the 1967 borders which has been a goal of Palestinian leaders for years. Livni’s argument is that Abbas could not agree to the Olmert offer due to opposition within Palestine, and she added, “the political situation in Israel also does not allow it to be signed.”

The best that Livni can offer is “let us not allow dates or political changes to stand in our way. The point is to understand the required concessions in order to conduct a correct process.” Perhaps, Livni is hoping John McCain will win the election and then support any Israel plan regardless if it has any chance of being accepted by Palestinians.

Israel could use a Nelson Mandela in charge of the government.

Will Israel Be That Important To US In 2009?

Yoel Marcus, writing in Haaretz raises the question as to whether after all the political posturing among Democrats and Republicans during the election, will Israel really be high on the agenda of any new American president in 2009. Israel always has placed high on the list of issues that American presidents are concerned with handling as exemplified by the fiasco of the famous Annapolis Conference called by George Bush. “What a lot of hot air that turned ou to be” and although Condi Rice flies around the Middle East there is scant evidence any of her trips have resulted in anything other than giving her a large number of frequent flyer miles.

Marcus bluntly says Israel will be lower on the list of important American needs given the current financial crisis and need to deal with major problems in Afghanistan. The Haaretz writer believes given those realities it is up to Israel to assume responsibility for solving its own conflicts and not simply rely upon an American intervention. “What we don’t do, nobody is going to do for us. We must get ready for a year without America.”

The real question is whether new prime minister Tzipi Livni can form a coalition with Ehud Barak and work together to achieve peace with the Palestinian Authority. Right wing fanatics like Benjamin Netanyahu are waiting in the wings and their obtaining power dooms any real chance for peace.

Livni Seeks To Create Coalition Government

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.

Will Livni Put Zip Into Leaving Conflict Behind?

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.

Unity Israel Government Or 3rd Intifada?

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.