Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Is Real Peace Attainable?

Perhaps one of the most consistent news headlines in recent years involves a continuous cycle of U.S. Presidents who stand hand-in-hand for photo-ops with Middle East leadership. Yet, lasting peace never comes.

Will any U.S. President successfully complete peace talks with Israel and Palestine? Is peace possible, or is President Obama continuing down a long road of near misses? It’s a lofty mission many American Presidents have had no success with.

President Obama is presently holding one-on-one talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, Jordanian King Abdullah and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. These leaders all claim an interest in peace, but I’m not sure whether they’re actually willing to work together to achieve it. Tensions continue to run high, as Hamas claimed responsibility for recent terrorist attacks against Israelis in the West Bank. Such negotiations require “give and take,” but it often seems everyone is willing to “take” but no one wants to “give” in the slightest.

Will American lawmakers find a way to supersede generations of religious turmoil among Muslims, Christians and Jews? Is America even in a political position to offer an opportunity for healing in the Middle East? I wonder whether another one-year timeline will come and go while the peace talks continuously drag on indefinitely.

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