Why Is France Hosting a Middle East Peace Conference?

(Huffington Post) David Harris - Dear French foreign minister, I am no less eager than you to find a lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. So why have we voiced the hope that the "Middle East peace conference" in Paris you will be hosting would be canceled? With everything happening in Europe today, why does this issue deserve such an investment of effort and energy? The EU is at risk, especially after the Brexit vote. Terrorists are exposing the weakness of the Schengen agreement. Disaffected parallel societies have emerged in the cities and suburbs of France, Belgium, and elsewhere. Populist parties promoting xenophobia and anti-Semitism are threatening the established order. But instead of focusing on any or all of these issues, the Quai d'Orsay is organizing yet another international effort to address a conflict that everyone knows can only be resolved by the parties themselves. If France has decided on the need for an international conference of some sort at this time, how about one on Syria, the greatest human tragedy of this century. Or how about on Libya, where a French decision in 2011 to help topple Muammar Gaddafi left the country in tatters, a breeding ground for jihadism. Or how about on the Kurds, a people in the Middle East with all the elements of nationhood - and among our most reliable allies. The writer is the executive director of the American Jewish Committee (AJC).

2017-01-11 00:00:00

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