Letter from Palestine

Are Israelis and Palestinians really ready to strike a peace agreement? Events have certainly moved at a brisk pace in recent months, with one obstacle after another to a lasting deal seeming to come down. Yasir Arafat’s death was followed by the choice of his successor in a direct election with universal suffrage, which was accompanied by Israel’s decision – one unique in the world – to help, not hinder the democratic process in territories it occupies. As a result, no one doubts Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s legitimacy.

Moreover, with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s announcement of his intention to withdraw Israel’s army unilaterally from Gaza, the occupation itself is once again an open question, offering opportunities for further progress. Indeed, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s support for the Gaza withdrawal has helped open the door to real negotiations.

Such an impressive sequence of events has not been seen for a long time in that troubled region. As a result, many – in and outside the Middle East – have become optimistic again. Even Sharon ventures a few favorable comments, and American diplomats express visible sighs of relief that progress toward peace can at last be made.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To access our archive, please log in or register now and read two articles from our archive every month for free. For unlimited access to our archive, as well as to the unrivaled analysis of PS On Point, subscribe now.


By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in


Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.