Conceivably the most considerable barrier to peace are the attitudes and expectations of both sides towards Palestine.
Both sides want all the land and believe they have the best claim, historical and religious. Any peace negotiations involving splitting the land will result in disappointment and resentment from both sides. Negotiations will end with both sides either losing too much or not gaining enough. Both sides will never be satisfied with any proposal and feel cheated about any land lost out on.
This is why compromise is so difficult.Another obstacle to peace is the presence of extremists on both sides; the actions of which often cause serious damage both to land and to already fragile relations with either side. An extremist is primarily "(used of opinions and actions) far beyond the norm; someone with extremist political views, radical opinions on education, or an ultra conservative. There will always be extremists on one side or another. It only takes a few individuals to upset years of peace negotiations.It is very difficult to stop or prevent extremists and a circle of violence is imminent.
This causes much fear in the residents of Palestine. Since September 28, 2000, Palestinians have killed over a thousand Israelis in terror and suicide attacks. Israelis have killed over 3,500 Palestinians in "defence" operations and reprisals, including many civilians. The Intifadeh destroyed the belief of many Israelis in the possibility of peace, and destroyed the credibility of Yasser Arafat and the PLO as peace partners.
Israeli retaliation and repression further embittered the Palestinians" (Information gathered from http://www. mideastweb. org/nutshell. htm. ) Extremists seem impossible to eradicate and neither side want to compromise terror tactics are enforced.
Another obstruction to peace is the issue of Arab refugees. Arabs are not allowed to re-enter Palestine by order of the Israeli government as they do not want to expel their own citizens for the sake of letting the Palestinians back in. Israelis see letting the Palestinians immigrate as undermining their Jewish state and Israel's main purpose. They also believe this would invoke new extremists into their already fragile country.
The desires of both sides are directly conflicting and they cannot both get what they want. Neither is willing to relent their current situation so compromise is slight.Jerusalem is the final barrier to peace as it is religiously important to both sides. For the Jews the West Wall remains are important. It is also the site of the Al-Aqsa mosque which is the third most important holy site for the Muslims.
The holy sites are situated close together and there is no possibility of partitioning the land. Jerusalem is therefore the accepted capital for both sides. Jerusalem is not an ordinary city. Both sides see it as their own and desire to be in control and in possession of their ancient holy sites.
Compromise is again, nearly impossible. The earliest attempt at a peace accord was at the Camp David agreement.The Camp David Accords were signed on the17th of September, 1978, by the Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin after twelve days of grueling negotiations in secret at Camp David. Success was reached on one level but was used by Israel against the Palestinian Liberation Organisation to build more illegal Israeli settlements. None of the barriers to peace were abolished and peace was only achieved with one Arab nation.
This therefore failed to stop the conflict with the Palestinians. A second attempt was made to reach peace at the 'Oslo Accords' in 1993.This was a series of private and public agreements, negotiated between the Israeli government and the P. L. O (acting as representatives of the Arab people) as part of a peace process trying to resolve the ongoing conflict.
This achieved the Israeli's partial withdrawal from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. However, no other issues were resolved. Violence caused by the attitudes and expectations of both sides flared and was ironically 'simmered down' by extremists. The Oslo Accords made the Israelis even more determined not to give any more of 'their' land away, and the Palestinians disappointed and more desperate to reclaim more land.The latest attempt at ending the conflict is referred to as the 'Roadmap to Peace'.
"The Roadmap represents a starting point toward achieving the vision of two states, a secure State of Israel and a viable, peaceful, democratic Palestine. It is a framework for progress towards lasting peace and security in the Middle East... " --President George W.
Bush The agreement will supposedly resolve the conflict and end the four decade Israeli occupation. The belief of land for peace, Resolutions 242, 338 and 1397 authorized by the Beirut Arab League Summit - calls for recognition of Israel as a neighbour living in peace and security.The main aims of the 'Roadmap to Peace' are to end terror and violence, normalise Palestinian life, and to build Palestinian institutes. Extremists continue to assassinate opponents and attitudes and expectations are still high. The vote for Israelis to leave the West Bank and Gaza Strip has not been passed by the Israelis and the discussion of refugees and Jerusalem has yet to take place. The 'Roadmap to Peace' looks likely to fail as a compromise looks difficult, if not impossible.
Although negotiations are still taking place, the Roadmap to peace has come no further to reaching a final solution to the conflict than any other attempts.In conclusion I believe that the obstacles I have discussed above still pose a threat and all three need reasonable solutions before a permanent solution can be reached. Many peace negotiations have taken place, including the Camp David agreement, Oslo Accords and the Roadmap to Peace. Jerusalem is a holy site to both sides and each side demands total control. Refugees are refused re-entry to Israel, extremists are causing havoc and the attitudes and high expectations of both sides towards Israel are all major barriers for peace.