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The End of the Peace Process

Oslo and After

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     Soon after the Oslo accords were signed in September 1993 by Israel and Palestinian Liberation Organization, Edward Said predicted that they could not lead to real peace.  In these essays, most written for Arab and European newspapers, Said uncovers the political mechanism that advertises reconciliation in the Middle East while keeping peace out of the picture.

     Said argues that the imbalance in power that forces Palestinians and Arab states to accept the concessions of the United States and Israel prohibits real negotiations and promotes the second-class treatment of Palestinians.  He documents what has really gone on in the occupied territories since the signing.  He reports worsening conditions for the Palestinians critiques Yasir Arafat's self-interested and oppressive leadership, denounces Israel's refusal to recognize Palestine's past, and—in essays new to this edition—addresses the resulting unrest.  

   In this unflinching cry for civic justice and self-determination, Said promotes not a political agenda but a transcendent alternative: the peaceful coexistence of Arabs and Jews enjoying equal rights and shared citizenship.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Apr 03, 2000 – In his 18th book, Palestinian writer and Columbia University literary scholar Said (author of the highly praised memoir Out of Place) once again brings acute insight to a controversial subject. In 50 essays (most of which were originally published in the Cairo Ahram Weekly and London's al-Hayat), he offers a bleak and somewhat cynical view of the Middle East peace process since Oslo. Deeply concerned with the fate of the Palestinian people, and without mincing words, Said probes their relationship to the Israeli government and their lives under Arafat's Palestinian Authority. He skewers the Oslo Agreements--arguing that Palestinians merely surrendered to the Israelis--as well as the Palestinian Authority and Arafat. (Peace, he points out, can only exist if equality and respect exist; as a result, he urges Palestinians to resist Israeli settlements with nonviolent demonstrations and to create stable, democratic institutions that can coexist peaceably with Israel.) Throughout, Said also comments on the role of intellectuals in political discourse, the Holocaust and, in a particularly poignant essay, the political development of his son, Wadie. Although they're stimulating, because these essays originated as newspaper columns, they're also occasionally repetitive, and some of the events that inspired them have receded into oblivion. Still, on the whole, this is a potent analysis--one that refuses to follow a party line--of the complexities and stark realities of Middle Eastern politics.

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The End of the Peace Process
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Social Science
  • Published: Apr 04, 2000
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 432 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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