Syria Interested In Israel Discussions

The government of Syria has indicated its willingness to hold talks with Israel as long as such discusisons do not interfere with current Israel interactions with the Abbas Palestinian Authority. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Mosilem emphasized his nation’s desire to explore all possible alternatives and indicated it would attend a conference in Moscow that would deal with Middle Eastern issues, particularly since the Golan Heights will be discussed. However, Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, he did not believe another conference was necessary and he was continuing his own talks with Abbas. Lavrov was told by President Shimon Peres that Syria continued sending arms to Hamas and the Russian promised to explore that issue.

Former Israel Justice Minister Dan Merdor urged his government to investigate any possiblities with the Syrian government about issues between the two nations. He believes Syria feels isolated and is ready to negotiate to get resolution on some of its issues with Israel. He emphasized talks might help break the axis now existing between Syria and Iran.

An ongoing problem in the Middle East is lack of a coherent plan to deal with such varied issues as Hamas, Syria, the Palestinian Authority, Gaza or Egypt. Political oppportunists like John McCain make dramatic dramatic statements and fly away to talk to someone else another day. There is no “roadmap” other than vague rhetorical utterances.