Why Middle East Negotiations Fail

The approach to Middle East negotiations generally adopted by the international community bears its own seeds of failure.  As a general principle, the party less interested in reaching a negotiated solution is given almost unfettered rein to impose stringent -- often unreasonable -- conditions before it will even begin to consider dialogue.  Conversely, the party more willing to compromise in order to reach an agreement is expected to comply with the preconditions simply to get talks started.  This stacks the deck in favor of the more intransigent party. As an example of this development, the Palestinian Authority has set explicit preconditions on its willingness to enter into discussions with Israel.  Among others, these conditions include cessation of all Israeli construction in the disputed territories and recognition of the 1948 armistice lines as the basis for the borders of an eventual Palestinian state.  The U.S. and the EU accept the PA's refusal to...(Read Full Article)

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