Why Legal Avenues to Mideast Peace Are Misguided

(Real Clear Politics) Peter Berkowitz - To subject the resolution of political controversies to legal reasoning that purports to yield rational, objective judgments is to pretend that one right answer is available for disputes that can only be managed through compromise and mutual accommodation. In July, Hebrew University professor of law emerita Ruth Gavison, an Israel Prize winner, argued that pursuit of a legal resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian controversy "actually deepens the deadlock." That's because the resort to legal reasoning obscures "the crucial political, social, cultural and religious processes in Israeli and Palestinian society" and "weakens, on both sides, the fortitude needed for painful concessions based on an agreement between the people and their leaders on what's the best outcome under the present circumstances." Gavison maintains, "From the perspective of international law, the Palestinians have no 'right' to end the occupation - which was the result of a defensive war - and Israel has no obligation to end it without a peace agreement." The writer is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution.

2017-09-14 00:00:00

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