Thursday, August 30, 2007

A breath of fresh air ...

This open letter published in the IHT is a welcome change in tone from Europe, often the source of vehement and unfair criticism of Israel. Several prominent European officials have openly denounced the upcoming conference of the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP), which is being hosted by the European Parliament.

It signals an awareness that endlessly blaming Israel for the ills of the region is not only inaccurate, but is detrimental to the cause of peace.

The CEIRPP casts a shadow on the UN role in the Middle East conflict and is first and foremost harmful to the UN. Its work only reinforces a long held Israeli suspicion vis-a-vis the UN and contributes nothing to the cause of peace. A recent example is a plan of action calling for boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel.

Will today's conference, in the halls of the European Parliament, issue similar directives? Though of little practical consequence, this conference, especially under the banner and auspices of the European Parliament, will harm the cause of peace and also damage European credibility as an honest broker.

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