Prospect for peace

(Foxnews/AP/AFP) There is a prospect for peace in the Middle East as Israel and Palestine renew peace talks. But there have been prospects for peace in the past and they have not fully succeeded.  Will this series of peace talks finally bring the peace so long hoped for?  No one knows but many are hopeful.

There are some, however, who are not so hopeful and nor do they even want peace talks.  Just this morning, Foxnews reports that a human rights group is encouraging the Palestinian authorities to investigate the beating of protesters of the sought-after peace.  Police, according to Fox, are claiming they were first attacked and responded in self-defense.  Three protesters have been arrested. Whether or not the beatings were excessive or not is not so much at issue as the reality that there are those who do not support the renewal of peace talks, on both sides.

It is key, however, that the US, EU, and Palestinian and Israeli officials are focused on a peaceful two-state solution.  According to another Fox news story, Israeli President Shimon Peres has said there is no other alternative than peace.  Pointing out that terrorism and war doing nothing but cost money, he said a peaceful solution helps the development of a more successful economy and social affairs.  This, in turn, alleviates the suffering of hunger and other issues of poverty that are increasing for both Israelis and Palestinians.  “The Middle East may change if terror and crisis and hunger and unemployment and oppression will make place for a new age of economics, social affairs,” he said.  “Terror doesn’t have a message, terror cannot bake bread and cannot offer fresh air to breathe. It’s costly, it’s useless, it doesn’t produce anything.”

The US has played a major part in helping to bring the two parties back to the table in part thanks to the tireless efforts of Secretary of State, John Kerry who hosted the first of the talks in Washington D.C.  The European Union is also focused on helping the talks to be successful.  “I firmly believe that a final end to this conflict is within reach,” Catherine Ashton said in a statement.  Ashton is currently the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy for the European Union.

The Franciscan Foundation for the Holy Land continues to pray and work for peace and encourages you to do the same, especially as these peace talks progress over the next nine months.