|Blair unveils Jenin economic plan|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Tuesday, 13 May 2008 11:51|
Tony Blair, the Quartet's Special Envoy to the Middle East, has unveiled a new economic development plan that is designed to boost the Palestinian economy and pave the way for the eventual establishment of a Palestinian state. The former British prime Minister revealed details of the plan one day before US President Bush is due to arrive in the region. Under the plan, the Israeli Defence Forces will demolish half a dozen road blocks in Judea and Samaria, and upgrade several others to allow a greater flow of traffic. Palestinian security forces will take control of this new zone, and the international community will fund investment projects in the area to help boost the Palestinian economy. Blair hopes that by improving the economic well-being of ordinary Palestinians and by removing travelling restrictions in the territories, there is a much greater chance that a future peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians will take hold. The people of Gaza could then be given the option of whether they want to remain under the rule of Hamas, or become part of this new Palestinian state.
Quote: "The plan, which Mr Blair says the Israeli security forces as well as Palestinian leadership are backing, allows for a gradual relief of key roadblocks across the West Bank. At the same time, Palestinian security forces will take over a large block of the northern West bank, which will also be targeted for investment projects, such as industrial zone funded by the German Government and Palestinian schools and other public amenities built in areas hitherto under Israeli control. Mr Blair appears to be hoping that if it works, the Palestinians will be inspired to replicate the model, taking control of the West Bank bit by bit until the shape of a viable state emerges.
Last week around six hundred Palestinian police officers were deployed in Jenin by the Palestinian Authority. This comes after a similar deployment in Shechem last year, shortly following the Annapolis peace conference. US Security Coordinator General Keith Dayton said at the time, that occasion that the handover of Shechem to the Palestinian security forces represented the beginning of the establishment of a Palestinian state. To the right hand side of this paragraph is a photo taken by the Associated Press of the recent Palestinian deployment in Jenin. The image captures perfectly that statement from the Scriptures...
As we can see, the international community is doing its utmost to support the establishment of a Palestinian state. We must remember though, this is not necessarily a conflict between Israeli and Palestinian or Jew and Muslim. It is a conflict between good and evil, between God and Satan. For while the Arab goal may be destruction of the Jewish state, Satan's aim in all of this is to prevent of the return of Christ to Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:4) and the establishment of God's kingdom on earth (Daniel 2:44). For us it is hard to understand how Satan could undertake all of this, knowing his fate is sealed and he will at last be cast into the lake of fire. As we discussed before, God grants repentance to men but not to angels. God never intended for men to be cast into the lake of fire, it was originally designed as a place of punishment for the Devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). Today God offers you opportunity to repent, and to believe on His Son Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Matthew 9:6). The judgement of this world must come, but a glorious future awaits those who have believed on Jesus Christ. Will you be part of that glorious future? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation today.