Sharon Renews Palestinian Talks ; Possible War against Iraq Is Spurring a New Detente between Israel and the Palestinians

By Nicole Gaouette writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, February 1, 2003 | Go to article overview

Sharon Renews Palestinian Talks ; Possible War against Iraq Is Spurring a New Detente between Israel and the Palestinians


Nicole Gaouette writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has renewed contact with senior Palestinian leaders, an indication that the two sides might return to negotiations after months of letting guns and bombs do their talking.

The meetings, involving Mr. Sharon himself, follow efforts by the Palestinian Authority (PA) to reposition itself by trying to rein in militants, establish a ceasefire, and convey an interest in peace.

"Armed struggle does not benefit us," says Palestinian Interior Minister Hani al-Hassan, a key figure in the new talks. "We would like to coexist with Israel. We are ready to start a new era."

The rhetoric of detente is being driven by internal political pressures on both sides and a desire to prepare for the US war with Iraq, when many feel a new era will be foisted upon them.

"The region is going to be in profound trauma once the war begins," says Yossi Alpher, former head of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies in Tel Aviv. "Until it's over, everything is conceivable and nothing is inevitable."

The threat of war casts a long shadow, particularly for the Palestinian Authority (PA), which has been undermined by systematic Israeli strikes against its physical, financial, and human infrastructure.

Palestinians fear that Israel will strike hard during the war, when world attention is elsewhere. "We are really worried about it," says Mr. Hassan, speaking in his office beside the Ramallah compound that once housed the PA's headquarters. Israeli army sieges have left the compound a wasteland of twisted metal rods and rubble.

That anxiety, coupled with shock at the crushing election defeat of Israel's political left, is pushing the PA to engage with Sharon. It is also conducting talks in Cairo to establish a cease-fire among all Palestinian factions.

The PA's intent is to signal to Israel and the US its seriousness about peace discussions as well as reassert its legitimacy. Its leadership is being challenged by the militant group Hamas.

The PA and its main Fatah faction are also facing challenges from other groups, including the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the military wing of Fatah. In an indication of how splintered the Palestinian movement has become, the Al-Aqsa Brigades in Nablus recently threatened Interior Minister Hassan, a Fatah member, for his condemnation of a suicide bombing by the group.

Hassan said the bombing was meant to derail the Cairo ceasefire talks. In posters that appeared throughout Nablus after his comments, the Al-Aqsa Brigades criticized Hassan's "contempt" and said their operations could "also reach [Hassan]."

"Hamas and other rejectionist groups pose a tremendous threat to the PA," says a foreign diplomat. "They are looking to undermine the PA, Arafat, and Oslo and they way they do that is looking to embarrass Arafat whenever they can, so that the Israelis bring him down."

Prime Minister Sharon is also factoring in domestic politics as he engages with the Palestinians. In the aftermath of his election victory, he is still trying to put together a coalition that includes the Labor Party.

Labor's leader, Amram Mitzna, has been adamant that this not take place. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Sharon Renews Palestinian Talks ; Possible War against Iraq Is Spurring a New Detente between Israel and the Palestinians
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.