Gaza- What the UN Should Do

Published on 18th January 2009

Gaza Attacks
Now, let me make this as straightforward as possible. I’m not interested in the “you started it, no you started it” conversations. Moreover, this shouldn’t be taken as a comprehensive solution.

What I would like to see is an end to the killing as soon as possible, and something constructive. Israel can invade Gaza all it wants but it’s not going to destroy Hamas, not without incurring a significant death toll on its own army and on many innocent Palestinians. It’s going to fail just like it did in the recent war with Lebanon when it stated the destruction of Hezbollah as its goal.It never happened then, and it won't  happen now with Hamas. Another failure is inevitable.

What succeeded in the last Israel-Lebanon war… was the buffer zone. It worked rather nicely.

I don’t look up to the UN as the big benevolent daddy capable of solving all the world’s problems, the least of them being ones involving lots of bombs and blood. It’s broken, nearly outmoded and at times outright terrible. Need I mention Darfur?

Here’s the deal. Just because airplanes crash once in a while doesn’t mean we should stop using them for air travel. The buffer zone is so far working well in preventing another outbreak of violence between Israel and Lebanon. Furthermore, you also have the DMZ in the Korean peninsula. It’s done miracles especially for South Korea and its economy.

What I’d like to see is those nations complaining about the current violence, contributing their troops to an international peacekeeping force to be deployed to the Israel-Gaza border. Create a buffer zone there. Hamas will think twice about committing violence against international peacekeepers because it will risk invoking significant wrath if some peacekeepers die. It will face big difficulty firing its pathetic rockets into Israel too. On the other hand, Israel will stop raining big fat bombs and killing many innocent souls (aka “collateral damage”) in the process.

Next, once there is peace on the ground, formulate a plan involving certain countries with influence over Israel and Hamas (possibly oil-rich Arab countries and Western ones) to invest serious money into Gaza, while still making sure international peacekeepers are there to maintain stability for years to come.

The investors stand to reap a handsome  return on investment (ROI) while the Palestinians can begin to have more economic prosperity, hope and stability, three things which will make it hard for Hamas to flourish and recruit. Radical theology alone will become increasingly inadequate with more and more young Palestinians, who’d rather live life, contribute to society and enjoy economic well-being.

As all the aforementioned happens, so can discussions between both sides over the big matters like Jerusalem. But at least with this kind of approach, the killing can be contained, and the perpetuation of violence can nosedive.That’s pretty much the gist of my proposal in a nutshell:  Buffer zone;  minimal violence and economic prosperity.

Drima,  [email protected]  runs The Sudanese Thinker blog.


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