|Iran may form part of Obama 'breakthrough' deal|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Wednesday, 26 August 2009 15:50|
|Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met with US Senator George Mitchell shortly following his visit to 10 Downing Street yesterday, increasing speculation that the peace plan being prepared by US President Obama is now nearing completion. Mitchell, who was involved in the peace process in Northern Ireland under the Clinton administration, was appointed as Special Envoy to the Middle East by Obama shortly after he took office. Although the talks have been held in private, some are speculating that the Israeli government may be willing to halt settlement construction in the territories in return for the US taking a much tougher line on Iran. Following his election, Netanyahu said that Obama had two jobs to do during his presidency - to fix the global economy and prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons. He said at the time, "You don't want a messianic apocalyptic cult controlling atomic bombs. When the wide-eyed believer gets hold of the reins of power and the weapons of mass death, then the entire world should start worrying, and that is what is happening in Iran". Shimon Peres, who met with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, also likened a nuclear weapon in Iranian hands to a "flying death camp". The US has been pressuring Arab states to do their part to help kick-start the peace process, although it is not certain whether any gestures of goodwill toward Israel will be forthcoming. |
Quote: "The president, who plans to make his announcement flanked by Netanyahu and the Palestinian leader, Mahmoud Abbas – plus the leaders of as many Arab states as he can muster – hopes that a final peace agreement can be negotiated within two years, a timetable viewed as unrealistic by Middle East analysts. Obama had hoped to unveil his plans before the start of Ramadan last weekend but failed to complete the deal with the Israelis or the Arab states in time. As well as a tougher US approach to Iran, which the Israelis see as their top priority, the deal would see Israel offering a temporary and partial moratorium on the expansion of settlements on the West Bank in return for moves by Arab states towards normalisation of relations. This would allow Obama to announce talks on the bigger Israeli-Palestinian issues – borders, the future of Jerusalem and the future of Palestinian refugees – with the US sitting in as a mediator.
Obama hopes that a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians could be realized within two years, a timeframe that has also been adopted by the Palestinian Authority. Prime Minister Salam Fayyad announced yesterday that he would seek to establishment of a de facto Palestinian state within two years time, despite the breakdown of peace talks with the Israelis. Fayyad hopes that by establishing governmental institutions in the 'West Bank', and by training security forces and developing the region, the Palestinian people will become a force to be reckoned with.
Quote: ""We call upon all our people to work together on the basis of full partnership in the process of completing and building the institutions of a free, democratic and stable state of Palestine," the plan states. "The world should hear the clear and united position from all walks of Palestinian society ... that the Israeli occupation is the only obstacle that hinders the stability, prosperity and the progress of our people and their right to freedom, independence and a decent life."
But Hamas has ridiculed the plans, which seem to make no mention of them or the Gaza Strip. The document is also unlikely to find much support among the Arab states either, which are reluctant to get actively involved in the peace process and hold Israel solely responsible for redressing the Palestinian issue.
It's hard to know what will happen. On the one hand I feel we are getting very close to the time of the end, and I wonder how many more peace plans there can be before we get to the one the Antichrist will enforce. I don't know whether I am subconsciously thinking about this 2012 theory, and wondering how much more time there can be, or whether there is anything more to it than that. On the other hand I can't really see Obama making much headway on Middle East peace. Perhaps it is possible that the next prophecy to be fulfilled will be a war between Israel and the Gog alliance. If that is the case then we can expect the situation with Iran to worsen. Perhaps the US and international community will cripple Iran economically, and that will be what drives the Islamic nations to invade Israel? In any case we can be certain that it will happen exactly the way the Bible says it will. What if it were September 2011? What if we only had two years left before the tribulation would begin? How would that affect your priorities in life? What will you live for? For the present, which will only last a fleeting moment? Or for eternity, which will last forever? Will you live for yourself, or will you live for Jesus Christ? That is what it comes down to. To me there is no comparison. But you must make that decision for yourself.