The U.S. and Israel missed many opportunities for peace with Hamas

The U.S. and Israel missed many opportunities for peace with Hamas

Sandy Tolan writes:

The continued failure of the Biden administration to secure a full and lasting ceasefire in Gaza may go down as the most terrible and deadly diplomatic catastrophe of our time. The principles have been in place for weeks; Hamas has agreed to the general terms, and endorsed the June 10 ceasefire resolution by the UN Security Council. Yet US deference to Israeli intransigence – no matter that it stubbornly blames Hamas – is costing thousands of Palestinian lives.

Any close follower of US-Israeli relations might have predicted this. US acquiescence to Israel’s unprecedented onslaught in Gaza has powerful roots in the last 30 years – ironically, since the beginning of the Oslo “peace process” in 1993. US reluctance to confront its ally, save it from itself, and insist on a visionary path of reconciliation, has brought us to this latest precipice.

Let us travel, for example, to June 2006, when a private US citizen named Jerome Segal left the Gaza Strip carrying a letter for Washington. The letter was from Ismail Haniyeh, then and now the Hamas leader. Segal, founder of the Jewish Peace Lobby at the University of Maryland, was bound for the State Department, where he would deliver a surprising offer. [Continue reading…]

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