Peacebuilding—A Key Component in the Peace Process
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It is clear to all of us, maybe not to all political leaders, that the gaps between the national narratives of Israelis and Palestinians and the declarative positions of their governments are too wide to bridge and that their historical conflict is too fundamental and chronic to be resolved by diplomatic shortcuts. At the root of this conflict are deep-seated distrust, suspicion, bitterness, and hostility that must be overcome in order for future peace negotiations to succeed. Therefore, we need to move from “agreement first, peace later” to a true peace process—a series of well-designed peace actions and interactions leading to a fundamental change on the ground as a necessary precursor to the formal negotiation process (see details in Chapter 18).
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