The Gaza Narrative

(Chicago Tribune) Editorial - Both Israelis and Palestinians know that the narrative - who controls it, which of the two competing versions the world perceives to be more true - shapes the reality on the ground and any prospective peace deal. In the battle to write the dominant historical narrative of the Gaza exodus, how the Israeli withdrawal is perceived could set the stage for renewed peace efforts. Or it could bring a new spasm of terror and violence. If the militants of Hamas and Islamic Jihad succeed in selling their answer - that armed resistance forced the Israelis from Gaza - then that could embolden the terrorists. Sharon has rightly portrayed the withdrawal as an important strategic disengagement, undertaken to strengthen Israel's defensible borders and preserve the Jewish and democratic nature of Israel. In the aftermath of this painful pullout, one more question is likely to dominate the Israeli narrative: Is Israel more secure now? If not, Sharon will find little support for any renewed efforts to kindle peace talks.

2005-08-09 00:00:00

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