The Chicago Tribune

In search of justice in the Middle East

The US decision to back Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas in the recent turmoil virtually guarantees an escalation in violence. Abbas has installed an unelected “emergency” government to replace the democratically elected Hamas-led national unity government. Some have portrayed, Hamas’ takeover of Palestinian Authority security compounds in Gaza as a “coup.” But many Palestinians do not view it that way. EI’s Ali Abunimah writes in The Chicago Tribune. 

US can't ignore Palestine-Israel conflict forever

President Bush and Senator John Kerry have avoided mentioning the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in their campaigns. EI co-founder Ali Abunimah writes that while this is politically understandable, the next president will not be able to ignore it for long. US actions, combined with recent statements by a top Israeli official have only reinforced the worst suspicions of Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims that the United States is in cahoots with Israel to allow Israel to complete the colonization of the West Bank. Is there a way forward? 

What does Sharon's latest settlement move mean for Israel?

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s announcement that he plans to remove virtually all Israeli settlers from the occupied Gaza Strip has caused a shock wave in Israel. Has some sudden epiphany convinced Sharon that the settlements are the key obstacle to peace and that Israel’s future is jeopardized by the continued attempt to incorporate occupied Palestinian territories into a greater Israel? EI co-founder Ali Abunimah, and ADC Communications Director Hussein Ibish get to the bottom of the mystery in a Chicago Tribune commentary. 

The False Hope of the Geneva Accord

It has been almost two months since the last deadly attack on Israeli civilians by a Palestinian suicide bomber, but in the meantime, the Israeli army has killed more than 70 Palestinians, among them 17 children. Amidst the hopelessness, some people have turned to the so-called “Geneva Accord” as a way out. In his commentary published in The Chicago Tribune, EI’s Ali Abunimah says that the accord offers only false hope, however, he sees prospects for long-term peace between Israelis and Palestinians in their common homeland. 

Does the road map for peace have a chance?

The road map for Palestinian-Israeli peace is in trouble. With the Palestinian and Israeli leaders visiting Washington in quick succession, the Bush administration has a chance to stop it from running into a ditch. Palestinians have made significant progress toward fulfilling their commitments. Yet Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon shows little sign of reciprocating. The respected Association of Civil Rights in Israel has just issued its annual report condemning the army for abuses of Palestinians. “Most of the abuses,” the report states, “occur not as a result of operational necessity on the part of the army, but from vindictiveness on the part of soldiers, who receive implicit approval to denigrate the dignity, life and liberty of innocent Palestinians.” All of this goes on today. At the Aqaba summit in June, President Bush promised he would “ride herd” to keep the peace process on course. This is the time to show that wasn’t just Texas tough talk, and ensure that this rare opening is not lost. 

Violence, settlements and peace

President Bush’s summit with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas in Aqaba, Jordan, ended this week on an upbeat note. But Sharon’s announcement that Israel will dismantle “unauthorized” settler outposts as its contribution to implementing Phase 1 of the “road map,” and his failure to announce a construction freeze in other settlements, is a sign that the initiative will quickly run aground unless Bush forcefully upholds his peace plan, says EI founder Ali Abunimah in a Chicago Tribune commentary.