Horizons Of Peace

by Mamdouh Nofal on 14/04/2004

After three years of frustration and despair, the Geneva and the Nusseibeh-Ayalon initiatives revived the peacemaking idea between Palestinians and Israelis. Both initiatives have proven that there is, on the Palestinian side, a partner for real peacemaking and that Sharon is ignoring this fact in order to undermine the peace process.

Both initiatives awakened the peace camp. In fact, the Geneva initiative presented detailed formulas that tackle the issues of Jerusalem, refugees, borders, settlement, security and future relations that the official negotiators and the U.S. failed to settle. Peace partisans reappeared on the political scene. They used both initiatives as evidence that the peace efforts were not useless.

Although both initiatives are two similar models to settle the conflict, yet, they caused a political storm in the Palestinian society and a warm welcome at both the regional and international levels. Some people considered it was a door to the Roadmap that seeks settling the conflict and establishing the Palestinian state.

The polls showed that both initiatives are significantly supported in the Palestinian society. True, the partisans of these initiatives are still a minority; however, they are an efficient one, which conducted to the following conclusion: the Palestinian-Israeli conflict cannot be settled with violence and there will be no security and stability in the region without a solution the Palestinians accept.

In parallel, both documents are strongly opposed in both the Palestinian and Israeli societies. They were accused of essential concessions. Both documents are not good to settle the cause. They considered undermining them as the top priority and decided to move against them.

No one can pretend that both initiatives are perfect and guarantee all Palestinian rights, however, the Palestinian interests impose dealing with them as being in the service of the national cause. I think that the deficiencies of both initiatives should not prevent us from seeing the many positive aspects; such as restoring the consideration of the peace forces and the peace plans, providing a real project and break the sharp Israeli pole based on occupying the Palestinian people.

I think that the success of the partisans of both initiatives in preserving the peace thought and overcoming the difficulties of Sharon’s era needs gathering the required elements and start a serious action according to a plan that seeks preventing the peace enemies from burying both initiatives and work on establishing popular frameworks.

If the peace partisans in Palestine succeeded in reaching a conciliatory formula, it is the people’s right to call for their unification in order to form the Palestinian peace forces coalition.