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Beyond the Geneva Accord

- Abstract

What are we to think of the “Geneva Accord,” also known as the “Geneva Initiative,” whose gala kick-off was held in Switzerland on December 1?

At first labeled a public-relations stunt by its detractors, this latest proposal for an Israeli-Palestinian peace settlement is not going to fade away. Its sponsors, starting with the 29 Israeli and 22 Palestinian intellectuals, academics, and politicians who formulated it jointly under the auspices of the Swiss foreign ministry, have stressed that it is a non-governmental document “representing no official body.” But from the start they clearly intended to involve every official body they could in pressuring Israel to accept it. To judge by the international funding and media attention they have received, and the sympathetic response they have elicited not only in Europe but even from United States Secretary of State Colin Powell, there are good reasons for taking them seriously.

About the Author

Hillel Halkin is a columnist for the New York Sun and a veteran contributor to COMMENTARY. Portions of the present essay were delivered at Northwestern University in March as the Klutznick Lecture in Jewish Civilization.