The Forward reports that in the article "As Israel Debates Syrian Overture, Washington Presses To Stop Talks" that
While Syria's repeated offers to reopen peace talks with Jerusalem are triggering a fierce debate within the Israeli military and political establishment, the Bush administration appears united in its opposition to launching such negotiations.Jonathan points out that
The administration is not officially advising Israel against such talks, Israeli and American sources said. But Washington has refrained from publicly endorsing the resumption of Israeli-Syrian peace negotiations, and has quietly told Israeli leaders that this would be a bad time to resume talks with Syria, according to knowledgeable American and Israeli sources.
"It really wouldn't look good if Israel legitimizes Syria's regime by resuming peace talks when there is talk in Washington about striking Syria militarily," said one Israeli diplomat. It is a point, he added, not lost on Sharon.
This is simply rediculous. Everyone knows that Syria is a state sponsor of terrorism, but one would imagine that peace with Israel would lead President Bashar Assad -- a London-trained ophthalmologist -- to at least begin to curtail such actions. Besides, one more nation at peace with Israel would decrease tension in the region greatly.I'd post thison Kos but there is a rising anti-Israel sentiment in the Democratic Party...anyway, I had to share this!
Two facts quickly emerge from this story:
1. President Bush doesn't actually care that much about Israel; if he did, he would support peace negotiations.
2. President Bush does not want Syria to look good in the international community. Both Iran and Syria are supporting Iraqi insurgents, but Syria would be much easier to bully than Iran. If Syria were to make peace with Israel, however, American would be put in a very difficult situation.
Frankly, it is unacceptable that the US government is opposed to peace negotiations between Israel and Syria. This story needs to get wider attention than merely the nation's leading Jewish newspaper, though that's a start. Hopefully if The Times, The Post and other outlets pick this up, it will generate the outrage that it deserves.