The Peace Talks That Kill

(Daily Beast) Thanassis Cambanis - In the years I've spent covering the region, I've been hard pressed to see any tangible peace dividend from the many rounds of Middle East peace talks. Not a single person I interviewed in the Middle East during the last two months expected anything to come of the current talks, although no one predicted either that a failed peace process would unleash a new intifada. Instead, the Arab diplomats, analysts, and activists who support Hamas and Hizbullah with whom I spoke seemed in accord that for the time being, neither the Israelis nor the Palestinians saw anything to gain from dialogue, except for earning chits with Washington. The main benefit of a peace process, in this view, is that Washington wants one, and so long as it doesn't cost anything, Washington's allies in Ramallah and Jerusalem are happy to oblige. The writer has covered the Arab world since 2003, including four years as the Boston Globe Baghdad and Middle East bureau chief.

2010-10-08 09:37:39

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