Thursday, April 17, 2008

Give the Man a Medal!

The same act President Bush made to the architects and implementers of Operation Iraqi Freedom could hold up that long sought after peace between Israel and the Palestinian Territories. Bush pinned metal on General Tommy Franks, CIA Chief George Tenet, and Iraqi CPA head Paul Bremer for their contributions.

With the Palestinian territories divided, Israel and the U.S. pursue peace with one half of elected leadership, the Fatah led Palestinian Authority governing the West Bank. The Hamas led Gaza government has been shunned by virtually everyone since winning elections in January of 2006. Yet, Israel complained to White House National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley about the Palestinian Authority's plans to award medals to five female Palestinian terrorists serving sentences in Israel. Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni pointed out to Hadley "the grave and problematical issues arising from this, and the message it transmits, regarding the Palestinian Authority's obligation to prevent terror within PA-controlled areas."

Mr. Hadley is in the region to lay the ground work for President Bush's upcoming May visit. The Jerusalem Post reported:

Diplomatic officials said there was a widespread expectation that Israel and the Palestinian Authority would sign some kind of document of principles in Bush's presence next month, to give the sense that there was real movement in the diplomatic process that the US president ushered in at the Annapolis conference last November.

If they're negotiating with half the Palestinian leadership and complaining over the awarding of medals, any document signed will likely be less than historic (using Bush's definition of the word). What if peace isn't arranged by the end of Bush's term? There's another award winning female ready to fill his shoes...