They had such certainty, such determination, and such faith that God and history were on their side. Travellers to the Middle East are often struck by the heat, and the starkness of the light. Yet in winter, in the hills of Jerusalem and the West Bank, it is cool, wet, and even sometimes snowy. That day was damp. It was January 2003. Israel was preparing to vote in a general election which would return Ariel Sharon as Prime Minister. I had gone to do a story on settlers on the West Bank. In those days, the months before the presentation of the Roadmap, the United States’ efforts to bring peace to the region were a significant, if secondary, theme of the coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Everyone between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean seemed strongly to suspect, even to know, that the United States and its allies were going to attack Iraq, and remove Saddam Hussein from power. Then, the future of Iraq and seeking a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict were seen in British and American diplomatic circles as two parts of a wider approach to the region as a whole.
KeywordsPrime Minister Gaza Strip Palestinian Authority Consul General Israeli Government
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