A four state solution in the Middle East? Or just a problem?

Hamas has ended its six month ceasefire today, which for the umpteenth time brings the search for a Middle East peace process back into the forefront of many of our minds. Jonathan Freedland is a leading commentator in the UK argues that a new approach and a new reality need to be acknowledged.

A four state solution isn’t the right solution as that will mean continuous division in the area. It isn’t the answer as that will mean more interventions and influence from the outside. Hamas will look to the Iranians (Israel’s enemy number one in the Middle East) for its protection and support. Fattah will mainly rely on the West and moderate Arab states. As such, the problem will continue as it’s unlikely to create trust between all the four parties. The conflict will continue under different forms. But Lasting peace is hard to achieve in view of the intransigent views from all sides. It’s like asking Gaza to unite with Egypt and the West Bank to unite with Jordan and to leave the rest of the land to Israel.

Thee will be continuous suspicion between them, especially between hard-line Palestinians and hard-line Israelis. At the same time the establishment of a Palestinian state is now just a wishful thinking as it has been postponed since the Oslo peace agreement in 1994 on many occasions.

Almost each year after this date there has been optimism that the Palestinians can have their state. But the differences between the Palestinians themselves on one hand and Israel on the other hand has put this plan on halt.

In case of the establishment of Gaza and Judea as states, it will be interesting to see how diametrically religiously opposed entities can survive and coexist and if Israel West Bank can really make good neighbours.

The end of the conflict between the Palestinians and Israel should be based on the respect of mutual rights. A ceasefire between the two sides is just a prolongation of the conflict which resumes once it ends.

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