NPR has made a seven-part series that takes a look at the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since the first Zionist conference in 1897. It sounds like a superbly researched and well reported series. When all sense of up and down has been lost or confused in the current events of the conflict, it is important to remember the roots of how part Palestine came to become a Jewish state. When one really look at the history, it is much easier to see how complicated this struggle is for both sides. This should be required listening.
The seven-part series began on Monday. Part four, about the 1967 six-day war, airs today.
We're already running a marathon with cement feet, why add hurdles? In the attempts for peace in Israel and Palestine, the task before negotiators is not in the foreseeable future. Any peace that will be made will take years to materialize. After the past two years of fighting, killing, bombing, and military incursions, peace has been pushed further from grasp.
So at this point of bitter conflict, stubborn leadership and general unwillingness to proceed towards peace, why would the U.S. Congress pass a bill that would move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem? Just why? Clearly the issue of Jerusalem is the most complicated, shortest tempered issues that needs to ironed out before peace is proclaimed. Jerusalem is by far the holiest of cities for Jews, but also for Muslims and Christians as well. Usurping the interwoven complexity of the Jerusalem debate, and making the city the embassy location for America's presence in Israel, is a terrible move for the Bush administration. It simply could not have come at a worse time.
Peace needs compromise. Let's not move further from the peace table with symbolic and unnecessary political moves. No hurdles.