The dramatic events that have been going on for weeks now in Gaza are the tragic consequences of the blatant failure of the peace processes which succeeded for decades in the region. Newropeans and Franck Biancheri have always called for the EU to take strong positions and follow a strict agenda: putting an embargo on Israeli and Palestinian heads of governements who behave as warlords more than as politicial leaders, and speaking directly to the Israeli and Palestinian civil society because « Neither the one nor the other have anymore vision (if they have ever had) for the future of their people, and even less for both peoples taken together; they are no longer part of the solution in the Middle East, they are part of the problem. » (Franck Biancheri)1
It is been officially acknowledged for a long time, even by the highest international authorities, that the Israeli government has never respected, and does not even want to meet any of the commitments and promises made in, the agreements reached in negotiations with the United States and the EU2. Instead the Israeli government has continued to develop and strengthen colonies in Palestine, abused citizens of Gaza (including children and women), now threatening Cis-Jordan, recently launching airstrikes in Lebanon and Syria.
It is also acted that Palestinian leaders, namely Abbas who in fact needs the military-fundamentalist Hamas as an instrument of self-legitimacy even if he officialy "slams Hamas over rocket attacks on Israel", are to be held responsible for the situation because they proved incapable of building and governing a real state, of renewing the Palestinian leadership, of providing the political impetus needed for the Palestinian people to become a full-fledged actor in the peace process and push the partially opened doors in the world for help3.
Faced with the upsurge of violence, for the sake of thousands of civilians in Palestine and Israel, and for its own sake, Europe has a key-role to play, now!
. On the one hand it is not permissible to accept that a partner government, like Israel, disregards to that extent the fundamental international rules and the commitments signed with its partners, particularly in Europe;
. On the other hand, stability and peace in its neighborhood should be a common strategic priority for the EU, knowing that this new outbreak of violence directly weighs on the EU and has a direct impact on European civil society, as demonstrated by the various protest movements in support of the Palestinian people in the EU ...
. Finally, a stable and peaceful situation between Israel/Palestine is no more achievable with the US.
It is becoming clear that, as the Arab world calls for supporting the Palestinian cause and arming the Hamas, the legitimacy of the United States is openly questioned as a result of their failures in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Ukraine... and of their unfailing support to the Israeli policy. Obviously the US no longer have the power to compel the Israeli government to cease agression and violation of internation laws4. Nor do they have the legitimacy to intervene in any new peace process: the breaking down of the Gaza truce negotiated in Paris is sufficient evidence.
On the other side the credibility of the "EU" is not convincing, insofar as the EU, led by the Barroso/Ashton/O'Sullivan clique, is wedged between its role as a vassal of the United States and that of a sovereign player for which it still has to invent a more efficient political tool than the European External Action Service (EEAS).
The region, shaken by intrinsic wars in which the U.S. is not neutral, has become increasingly chaotic. State-players from the region are no longer in a position to help. The EU must find and work with any external party outside sharing its objectives of stability and peace.
Here again the BRICS appear to be a potential stabilizing element.
Not only did the BRICS already agree on a common position and voted for the resolution entitled “Ensuring Respect for International Law in The Occupied Palestinian Territories including East Jerusalem” while the US voted against and Europe abstained5. but they are also putting together the tools to guide global governance through a multipolar world.
Unfortunately, for the time being, the world is led by Western opinion and decision makers and no one has the right to have a say when it is against the US-EU dogma without being called a "terrorist". But in consideration of the chaos resulting from a Western-led world, the new emerging global players could well be given access to the peace process tools worldwide.
It is high time Europe becomes a "peaceful power", as Franck Biancheri called for. It would have a chance becoming so if it supported the BRICS in accessing the peace-building instruments they've been practicing for over 60 years.
by Marianne Ranke-Cormier
Related: Newropeans position - EU Neighbourhood Policy - 'European Strategy for the Stabilization of Israel-Palestine' (2009-2024) on NIPI webpage