between Palestinians and Israelis, are bogged down for many
reasons, but mainly due to a basic lack of confidence. Syria
interrupted the talks with Israel because, in its view, Ehud Barak
was dragging his feet on the Golan issue by refusing to negotiate
the outline of the final border between Syria and Israel, based on
the June 4, 1967, armistice lines. Israel's insistence that
security arrangements and the content of the peace (normalization)
must be agreed upon first, provoked only distrust and resentment in
Damascus. On the other hand, Syria's high-handed manner of
conducting the negotiations - sending its foreign minister to talk
to Israel's prime minister, Farouk Al-Shara's refusal to shake
hands and to talk directly to his negotiating partner - these were
not exactly helpful in promoting a favorable climate for what,
after all, was supposed to be a peace parley.
Moreover, while Prime Minister Barak kept lauding President Assad
and the "great leader who created modern Syria,"
read more ...