Monday, August 22, 2005

A New Day?

Much controversy and debate has been circling the past few months as Israel announced that it would be pulling all settlements out of the Gaza strip and a few out of the West Bank, transferring power to the Palestinian Authority. The settlements--which are the result of 1967 war where-by Israeli forces gained control of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Golan Hieghts for nieghboring Arab's--have technically been an infrigement of International Law and have been the cause of many Palestianians worries, fearing less autonomy and land for themselves. The settlers on the other hand have heldfast that the land was given them by God, and that they must settle in order to restore the borders of historical Israel.

The Israeli-Palestianian Conflict is a complex and noble one if ever there was. Both groups have been the brunt of a diaspora and historical oppression. Since the creation of Israel, the region has been plaqued by violence and a horrid cycle of revenge and attack resulting in the deaths of thousands of innocent individuals. Yet as this latest intifada cools off and settlements are removed from the Gaza Strip my hopes rise. Despite concerns that the pullout may be taken as a victory for Islamic extremist groups, I view it as mature, bold, and much needed decision by Israel. Long have I been critical towards Sharon and his bulldoze first ask questions later policy towards Palestian, so this move caught me by surprise. Yet as the soveriegn state, I welcome Israel's ability to provide strong leadership, I only hope this sets the tone for the future and instills confidence in Abbas who has spoken widely and positively but failed to muster the tenacity reguired to pull his fellow Palestinians into line.

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