Hamas and Hezbollah are terrorist groups that Arafat does not control. If he did, the Israeli’s would have found out about it long ago and killed him. Hamas and Hezbollah as far as I know have no desire for peace with Israel.
By requiring that Arafat control these terrorists before they will talk peace, Israel has in effect given them veto power over peace. I’m hardly the first to point this out, as the Israeli’s have known this for years. Yet they still give incredible amounts of power to these organizations by letting them dictate when to talk to the Palestinian Authority.
He doesn’t “control” them, but he could arrest them – and actually keep 'em locked up. Instead, he uses a system of revolving-door jails where he has people arrested in name only (if even that). The Israelis have asked that he at least try to stop the terrorists. But he won’t even do that.
Oh, nonsense. Israel has been TRYING to solve this problem. It has tried making concessions to the Palestinians. Ehud Barak offered Arafat 95% of what he wanted. They were literally down to chopping up individual streets in Jerusalem. The Israelis were acting in good faith, trying to come to a mutually satisfactory agreement.
What have the Palestinians ever compromised on? They know that Israel’s prime concern is security, and yet they won’t even remove their claim to all of Israel.
And Arafat IS directly responsible. He claims that he can’t control the bombers, but most of the bombings recently have come from his own Fatah movement. The two most serious bombings were carried out by people who were supposed to be in jail, but were released by the Palestinian Authority.
Arafat offered to call a cease-fire the other day. If he can offer that, doesn’t it by definition mean that he has control over the situation? If he doesn’t, why should anyone care what he says? He’s trying to have it both ways.
The Palestinians have unilaterally violated some 64 different cease-fires since Arafat came to power. Two weeks ago, Sharon asked for a cease-fire as a condition to withdrawing the tanks from their positions. Arafat refused to halt the bombings for even 7 days. Sharon removed the tanks anyway as a show of good faith. The result? Even more bombings.
From the Israelis standpoint, the Palestinians have simply become intractable and militant. They won’t even enter into discussions any more. Israel is being forced into a position where it has to make unilateral concessions in the face of continual terror, which it cannot do or it validates the use of terrorism to force even more concessions.
If you want to assign percentages to blame here, I’d say it’s more like Israel 20%, Palestinians 80%.