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New round of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. Does anyone have any real hope?
Before I go any further let me clarify something:
I'm an Israeli trying to get a hold of an outsider's view of the issue. I am not here to start a flame war, or figure out who's in the right and who's in the wrong--both of those terms are relative, and the answer is merely a function of who you ask.
Now that we got that out of the way, does anyone feel this new round of talks will actually lead somewhere?
I don't know what it's like when viewed from without, but it seems to me that the general consensus among both Jews and Palestinians is that the talks will lead nowhere, just like the last round of talks, and the one before that, and the one before that.
There is a lot of bad blood, and everything from legitimate concerns to childish accusations from both sides of the fence. Non-negotiable describes many of the issues accurately, which is something of an oxymoron with what the talks are trying to accomplish.
Even if some agreement is achieved, the more moderate Fatah organization Israel is talking to has no presence in Gaza (were Hamas rules, and they won't negotiate on religious ground), and Israel's internal politics are anything but stable. If by some miracle an agreement is reached, will it be worth more than the paper its written on?
Again, I'm just trying to get a feel for what this whole conflict looks like to an outsider, and to ask if anyone out there still thinks this will end with anything other than a unilateral declaration of independence and who knows how much more violence?