Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Media Coverage of Arab League Acceptance of Saudi Peace Plan Does Not Ring True

Barry Rubin points out Why the “Arab Peace Initiative” is Both a Good Thing and a Scam:
Yet there are a lot of unaddressed points that make me strongly suspect that this is a public relations stunt to convince America and Western opinion that the Arab states want peace with Israel when not all of them do so.
Rubin finds the latest media coverage of the alleged acceptance of the Saudi Peace Plan by the Arab League to be problematic for a number of reasons -- among them:

  • Seven members of the Arab League attended this meeting (Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the Palestinian Authority) -- but only a vote of the Arab League’s 22 members can establish an official position. So despite media claim of a breakthrough, this was not an Arab League plan at all and does not represent an official Arab position.
  • Of the 7 Arab countries at the meeting, how likely is it that the Muslim Brotherhood regime in Egypt, the Hizballah-dominated regime in Lebanon, and the pro-Hamas / pro-Muslim Brotherhood regime in Qatar actually supported the suggested compromise peace with Israel?
  • No mention is made of the demand in the previous "Arab Peace Initiative" demanding the "right of return" of hundreds of thousands of anti-Israel Palestinian descendants of those who lived in the country 60 years ago and have been fighting to destroy Israel.
Read the whole thing.

Map of Arab League members.
Arab League Map. Source: ProCon.org; based on the Arab American Encyclopedia

On the flip side, Rubin does find positive aspects to the plan -- aspects that underscore the fact that the Israel-Palestinian peace negotiations are a low priority in the Middle East considering the current threats to stability there.

Here is the paradox of the situation. The very threats that make some governments wish the conflict would go away are the same threats that stop them from actually doing something about it.
What else would one expect from the Middle East?

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