“Absent negotiations, Palestinians plan to ask the UN in September to recognize their state. The United States will veto it when it gets to the Security Council” (No Plan For Talks, International Herald Tribune Column).
The column article “No Plan For Talks” (May 28, 2011): the current developments – or lack of – with regard to negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians feel like the same script; albeit with different actors. Disagreements, premised primarily upon Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu’s refusal to freeze settlement construction and Mr. Mahmoud Abbas’s push for their long-denied state, have led to a diplomatic stalemate. Unsurprisingly, the United States (USA) have been called upon to helm initiatives to bring both parties back to the table; at the same time, it is business-as-usual for the United Nations (UN) – with seemingly nonchalant and laissez-faire approaches towards the peace process.
For the individuals who still hold the belief that the UN stands for something, its disappointing apathy and lethargy in facilitating peace overtures will continue to prove otherwise. The reliance upon the USA and President Obama to facilitate the aforementioned proposals may continue to be feasible in the short-run, but only the UN can guarantee tangible and sustainable resolutions for the involved parties. Proponents of the Palestinian cause will always be cognisant of the historical, military and political-lobby links between Israel and the USA, and thus tend to distrust or construe its actions.
Deciding how to manage the occupied territories and proportion the ambiguously-defined territorial boundaries will be a significant challenge; but a solution will never be devised if the UN staunchly refuses to take a more proactive role. For a greater peace process to be set in motion, it is imperative for the UN to take a central role in coordinating recommendations, and getting the main stakeholders – including third-parties such as the USA and the Arab League – to address the concerns highlighted by Israel, Palestine, and their corresponding representatives. If the UN started to take things more seriously, perhaps their dedication will yield benefits in time to come.
A version of this article was published in the International Herald Tribune, the Global Edition of The New York Times.