tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN December 31, 2015 7:01am-9:02am EST
said while. so in the books i write magically called industrial perception. and he did not go to google with the expressed intent of personal computing. if you walk down the street 50% will look down at the palm of there he and. that cannot be the end point of human evolution of. [laughter] and basically with computing
>>. >> how will that work? i can see many levels. but most elders who are add a sister living facilities to see robotic technology. in the elder community and to let them travel to create communities that is something to get excited about. i have had two parents with end of life situations i have helped.
what others have said and the soulful where machines but it will not happen and. let's be real but autonomy is a real problem. with us delegation i think it is great they have raised the discussions. >> to look for the existential threat for society it would be generic -- genetic engineering. with daddy's a modification. what could possibly go wrong ? [laughter] >> is this the next book?
>>. >> in the world the smart machines is to understand the value but how do we do that? is a tall order. >> it is my belief that these kerry the value with them. but that is so we cannot forget these are extensions of the cuban designers. so a stanford economist is that technical knowledge in the hands of the engineers
>> so we would like to have our author read their own working in a rehab a copy of the book for your. so people in this paragraph that have crossed over. what began as the paradox that lies in the disputed decision of the engineers said the scientist that had intentionally chosen that the computer age to have the clear sense of the relationship to recognize
the benefit but also worried it would is educate humidity. the only to assure that the dichotomy that he identified. it is not about the rashid. >> we feel so lucky the you have been righty for us for so long. thank you. cockup spate mckyer will exit stage left in the book citing will happen down stairs. please go say hi we will see you in september.
is there a nonfiction author or book you would like to see featured on booktv? send us an e-mail, a tedious c-span.org. tweet us at the booktv. or post a comment on our wall, facebook.com/booktv. >> longtime white house reporter april ryan has written a book called "the presidency in black and white." how long have you been covering the white house and write about it? >> guest: i've been covering the white house for 18 years. i write about it because it's very important. people do need to know what's happening to the power. the leader of the free world, what is it doing on what's happening. it's beyond especially now with the first black president it is build the fact he used his been. if you want to give him, get a picture of him writing simple or sign a bill. it's about actual issues that affect america.
look at the times we're in right now. he wanted no everything presidential. what makes up his thought process of maybe not sending boots on the ground to syria to fight isis. what is in his mind when he thinks about women's issues are what he feels are quick. so everyone needs to know what the president is thinking, and i happened to be privileged to be one of the few people in this country will get a chance to have an up close view of the presidency and the president of the united states. people need to hear about it than one what is the black and white? >> guest: it is cyclical, something that continues to happen since the enslavement of africans in this country. there is a problem with race in this country and it is yet to be fixed. we solve the civil rights movement in the '50s and '60s. we saw major legislation, major laws, other still an intrinsic problem in this country that
needs to be fixed. today we are noticing tension between the black community and police, not simply don't support law enforcement. we do support law enforcement wholeheartedly but there has to be a weeding out of that policing. they're still the problem in the station and a lot of the problem is subtle and some of it is overt. and i talked to president obama recently on the flight going to selma. he said he fears, still close the gap, the gap still remains in the station. so there are still gaps in the station that need to be closed and hopefully the next president will deal with those issue. this is an issue that is not going away. haven't been able to get it right yet and other countries are watching us. >> host: if someone picks up "the presidency in black and white" either going to some personal stories about you working in the white house, and if so what is one you want to share? >> guest: yes. when the person picks up "the
presidency in black and white" they will get the various views. they will get various stories, first in stores on the president himself on the record from barack obama, bill clinton, former first president -- former first lady laura bush. what they will find out if some of the things that will happen in the white house when it comes to raise or thei the thoughts on certain issues about race. i remember a story, one of the most impassioned the stories of my life, going to the hardcover a few feet away from the white house within first lady laura bush, these descendents of slave from a plantation in alabama made these quilts and ultimately the first lady, at the end of the tour, these black women, about five black women, black women who i do not believe were
republicans, just were a bit of recognition. they were so happy. they just embraced the first lady in the huddle and started screaming thank you jesus and started crying. and a descendent of a slave, on my mother second fifth generation removed from a slave, it brought tears to my eyes. so there's a lot of human stories that so many people can relate to in this book. it's about you and me, not just about black. it's about wide, about all of us coming together. >> host: people go to booktv and type in april ryan they will see this big panel that was held, and author panel. what was that? >> guest: the author panel was a panel discussion on race. we had professor paul butler, author as well, he talks about criminal justice. we actually read, and author as well, promote the book fractured. we had michael eric dyson, and author himself who has various books and i was the moderator. we had a series of discussion,
serious civil discussion on issues of race. and from authors who have written about it and researched, who are experts in the field. we had a panel discussion on it. we had people from all walks of life, very adverse group of people who are in the audience and asked about it, ask questions. it was a great discussion get it was like the beginning of a discussion that needs to happen in this nation and we want to say thank you, i'm a booktv and politics and prose. we are going to do this again i believe in february so i hope booktv will be there but we had a discussion, discussion was needed and we will see that discussion keep going. >> host: april ryan from the white house and "the presidency in black and white." >> tonight on booktv we look at isis and terrorism.
the republican party has been be in the 1892 election. grover cleveland as coming to office. mckinley has been the governor of ohio and seeing the country descend into a deep depression and the republicans think the election of 1896 is going to be there is and he wants to be the nominee but he's not the front runner, not the favorite. >> and directly following that at 11 p.m. join booktv as we can a book party thrown for karl rove.
>> three days of nonfiction books and authors on c-span2. television for serious readers. >> now a talk of the israeli-palestinian conflict and the prospects for a two-state solution. this washington institute event is 90 minutes. >> welcome everyone. good morning. thank you for coming. why don't you take another minute, those of you who are still getting muffins and coffee and find your seats, please. we are delighted to have this special event today.
and i want to especially thank the panelists and all of you for coming so close to the holidays on a rainy day. much appreciated. it's a sign of how important the issues are even if they're not grabbing sensational headlines like isis or some of the things that are going on in the region these days. today we're going to have what we're calling a roundtable because i want to emphasize the dialogue aspect of it. >> despite the absence of a roundtable spirit right, despite the fact that it is all square. but we are going to ask each of our two speakers to talk relatively briefly, maybe 15 minutes, inept almost a full hour for comments, questions, discussion and maybe even debate. so let me again welcome our two
speakers, einat wilf is an adjunct fellow of the washington institute, a fellow at the gppi in jerusalem, a former labour member of the knesset, israel's parliament, and has just written a beautiful and interesting original and creative policy paper for the washington institute. they are printed copies of it right outside at the front desk, the reception desk here in the lobby. you can pick one up on your way out, if we haven't run out of them by there. it's called "aligning polcy with preference" and it provides one possible way i think of getting around the current diplomatic impasse between palestinians and israelis. and as the subtitle says, preserving a past to a two-state solution. our second speaker is ghaith al-omari who is a senior fellow here at the washington
institute, a good friend and colleague as well, and someone who played an important role as a key member of the palestinian authority negotiating team. in years past and was afterward a senior member of the american task force for palestine, and not to our great good fortune is here with us at the washington institute, and has written and spoken widely and creatively as well on all of these issues. so we look forward to the comments of the both of you will make. i want to give a special shout out to our deputy director for research, patrick clawson, but also to my good friend and colleague david mccluskey who came back from vacation just in order to be here with us and he was an expert on all peace process issues. so we hope that you have something to talk about in the q. and a. now without further ado i'm
going to give the floor to my friend and colleague, einat wilf. the floor shores. >> thank you for the opportunity to present the paper and for being here today. i want to start by saying is that often when i'm asked by diplomats if i'm in europe, less than the u.s., but how can we help? what can we do for peace? actually my answer is always if we were left alone it would be best. because i do believe that we do not benefit from having this conflict being constantly played out on the international stage. but i generally immediately acknowledged that we're not going to be left alone. that's not likely to happen. and countries from around the world and certainly western countries are heavily involved
in this conflict, like it or not. so what this paper is basically looking is what western countries are doing with respect to the conflict, to making peace, to preserving or trying to achieve a two-state solution, and whether that is helpful, how it can be more helpful and whether we are witnessing the changing paradigm. because what appears to be happening at the moment is that there's a general sense that the two-state solution, such that it ever was a solution, is in jeopardy. and that it is in jeopardy from a right directions. the growing intellectual discourse of the one state solution, the current israeli government, and it's nominations, appointments and the policies of some of its senior nominations and
appointments who are opposed to a two-state solution, the settlement building, president abbas called for the world to stop focusing on negotiations and take international action. so it seems from a whole variety of direction there's a sense that the two-state solution is in jeopardy, and yet it still remains the most widely accepted idea for how we can have peace between jews and arabs in a small piece of land between the jordan river and the mediterranean. now, for quite a few decades of the governing paradigm of the western countries look at the conflict was negotiations. direct negotiations based on the 242 land for peace formula that over time became more detailed in the roadmap but the notion had been to privilege the process over the outcome. so the idea was that nevada what is happening, the support is for
direct negotiations and generally sanctioned it for those who try to circumvent negotiations to achieve outcome in the absence of negotiation. but was simply increasing happening is a certain frustration which is openly oppressed by many countries and their leaders that negotiations have failed to lead to the desired outcome and, therefore, if we cannot trust negotiations, and as i said president abbas even said called for clearly abandoning the paradigm of negotiations, what can be done to achieve that outcome that is the desired outcome. and we are seeing in this context of right of actions taken place. most prominently is a direct recognition of to a state of
palestine, labeling of some products, french in new zealand efforts currently at bay but might be refuted, u.n. security council resolution, occasional debate on whether the united states might not veto such resolutions so to leave the floor open for them to move forward. so we are seeing things taking shape both in parliament, just now greece is emerging as a country that is looking to recognize palestine in addition to the vote in parliament. so what i decided to look is where is all of this leading? what would happen if western countries basically decided to say, okay, negotiations are not leading to the outcome we envisioned so we're going to try to create this outcome and the absence of negotiations.
and i am not prescribing this. i'm not saying that this is what should be done. as i said i personally believe that if we were left alone without the global spotlight and attention we would've long ago managed some agreements, but i'm describing and trying to analyze what might happen given this combination of frustration with the negotiations and a sense that the two-state solution is in jeopardy. so i began to look at what negotiations have yielded. the negotiations have not yielded peace and have not yielded anything close to peace. but they have yielded over more than 20 years of negotiations, a certain kind of more detailed understanding of what peace would look like were it to be achieved. off a note in the phrase of we all know what peace looks like, or we all know what a two-state solution looks like.
and it is a combination of the right of actions, repeated rounds of negotiations, the roadmap, the geneva track to agreement. qualities have ultimately yielded a set of what could be called preferences. so these are the more detailed preferences of the west for the outcome, for what a two-state solution would look like in practice. they basically include the following four elements. the first is the establishment of an arab palestinian state side-by-side with the state of israel. in the paper i reflected a question of status. recognized borders that separate the individual and the state of palestine based on the 1967 or the 1949 cease-fire agreements, with some land that includes major settlement blocs. annexed to israel and in
exchange the equivalent may have been given the state of palestine, that that is the territory of a state of palestine is equivalent to the territory of the west bank in gaza. it's not exactly the territory of the west bank in gaza. there's the issue of borders. jerusalem as the capital of both states with residential west jerusalem and a jewish neighborhood of east jerusalem to be the capital of israel. the residential arab neighborhoods of east jerusalem to be the capital of palestine, and a special status what is called the holy basin, the one square kilometer of the oldest city that is both a focus on how to ensure religious observance for all. so this is a question of jerusalem and what is called in the roadmap, and realistic solution to the refugee issue which is generally come to mean
that those internally displaced people, refugees and their descendents, today registered 5 million, the palestinians include more, people say seven or 8 million, would have a right to live in palestine. they will also be those of the want to the right to settle in the country for some of them lived today, jordan, such as it is, and lebanon, and that they will have a measured conversation and devastated that you will accept some of the original refugees and their descendents. the numbers are listed from several thousand to several tens of thousands over the years, but with the understanding that whatever the number is that israel accepts, it represents an end to all claims and the
closure of the issue. and this is what is referred to in the paper as a question of the displaced persons refugees and their descendents. so given that these are the preferences and more detailed understanding of what a two-state solution would look like, and that has emerged from over 20 years of negotiations, we are to the policies of western countries stand with respect to the preferences? if this is the preference for outcome, do their policies reflect that preferences? and basically the short answer is no. and sometimes it is a big no. for example, almost all western countries want to see a state of palestine emerge, always. but almost all of them do not recognize the state of palestine as existing in the present. they say it does not exist but
it should exist. and in that sense the policy is not aligned with the preference for the outcome of the palestinian state. this is the one issue where beginning to see a breaking of frank with the traditional paradigm that negotiations should determine the emergence of a palestinian state. most notably sweden but before the iceland and maybe the vatican and maybe now greece that have bilateral and directly recognized the state of palestine as exhibiting now. and this is the line that has been in the past preserved a many western countries have offered the palestinians the trappings of a state from recognizing the representatives of ambassadors but never recognizing a palestine is a state that exist. it appears to be changing as more and more countries are looking to align the policy with preference and assistance our preference is for the emergence
of a palestinian state, we will actually recognize it as existing now. on the issue of borders, what is happening there is what i call essentially and overshooting. all western countries basically treat all israeli presence beyond the 1949 cease-fire lines as illegal regardless of whether you think that. right or not why, this is the reigning consensus, and that he is that they are all equal. it could be a neighbor, could be an outpost on the mountains in the west bank. but all equally illegal, equally condemned. in that respect theirs and overshooting where there's no incorporation of the fisa whether it's the bush letter or the arab league declarations that have allowed for swaps,
there is an understanding that the 1949 cease-fire lines will not be the borders, but there is no treatment in policy of western countries that we've already moved to a different view of the equivalent character rather than the precise border. into online policy with preference in this case would require western countries to actually do the hard work, delineating some kind of border of saying okay, we accept, because there's the notion of a settlement that is there've been established so there's nothing that says okay, we accept that these are the queue, 3% of the west bank that will be part of israel in any future agreement. we will no longer condemn buildings in this land, but everything else we will take a harsher measure. this would be a more proper alignment of policy with
preference, but at the moment, and we're seeing it and labeling issue, the tendency is to maintain the overshooting policy which does not recognize the developments that have taken place in negotiations. the issue of jerusalem is particularly interesting to test your western countries remain attached to the 1947 partition proposal. and that shows you how much of their policy differs from their preference. according to the 1947 precision proposal, jerusalem, that is a large swath of air that includes all of jerusalem today, belongs to no one. and the official policy of all western countries, with respect to israel is that jerusalem belongs to no one. as a result there is no recognition of even the west jerusalem as the capital of israel, no western embassies, none at all in west jerusalem.
you will see it here in various comments that tel aviv opposes that even though there's no tel aviv as a government come as a seat of government. so a complete denial that wasn't jerusalem is the capital of the state of israel, and yet in many same declarations east jerusalem is treated as palestine. often you will hear it being said occupied palestinian territory, occupied palestinian jerusalem. so what is happening come and take in the case of sweden is particularly constructive, sweden declared that after it recognize palestine it will see its consul in east jerusalem as ambassador to palestine, that it will not open in embassy. so what do we have? sweden recognizes palestine, but
the ambassador to palestine from sweden lives in east jerusalem, in arab east jerusalem. if sweden would not take the corresponding steps of moving as ambassador to west jerusalem. so basically israel is judged by the 1947 ideas and the palestinians are looked up through the 1967 lens. there's no consistency, no coherence on that, and if policy were to be aligned with preference, what we would see as a recognition of residential west jerusalem as the official capital of israel, including embassies, recognition of residence is jerusalem as the capital of palestine, and a continued effort to ensure that the holy basin remains open to religious worship to all religions. the notion of the separate
corporis, the 1947, could have a limited only to the holy basin. and, finally, on the issue of refugees and their descendents. i find the most glaring inconsistency between policy and preference. because the preference is for peace by means of two states for two people. the jewish people have arrived to self-determination. the arab palestinians have a right to self-determination. and yet western countries are almost the sole support of the u.n. agency that calls under a that essentially perpetuates the notion that the palestinian refugees and their descendents have a right to become a citizen of the state of israel, the so-called right of return. those who fund under a including the united states claim it does
not mean they condone the notion that refugees entered decent have a right to return to israel. but actually they depict this is what's happening in practice the palestinians in many ways and that great paper by the international crisis which was recent published on the shows that they get international support as a guarantee that the international community supports the right of return. andy kay in the case of sweden is instructive. sweden recognize palestine as a country already existing. sweden is also one of the largest single country donors to unrra. does this mean that while sweden says the palestine exists in the west bank and gaza, it also supports an organization that says that about 2 million people who live in the west bank in gaza, most of whom were born there, lived there their entire lives have never been displaced,
a refugees from palestine? so they live in palestine but the ref -- but they are refugees from palestine. this can only be squared at the palestine they are refugees from is greater palestine, the palestine that will one day supersede issue. this is not a policy that is in line with the idea of support for two states for two people. a coherent policy would recognize palestine in the west bank and gaza and then immediately argue that those who live in palestine are no longer refugees from palestine, and those who live outside can be granted citizenship and be acknowledged that citizens of palestine living elsewhere but not as refugees from palestine. so if western countries would go to the logical end of the idea of trying to focus on outcome
rather than on the process, a full consistent alignment of their policy with their preference would be recognizing a state of palestine fully and directly with its capital in residential arab east jerusalem, while focusing on worship rights in the holy basin. doing that in borders that reflect the idea of swaps for settlement blocs, and acknowledging that those who live in palestine are no longer refugees in palestine. that would be a full and coherent policy. and, finally, i ended by saying that will this promote peace? because the argument of countries that recognize palestine or label settlement products is that this will help peace at and what i'm arguing is that the only way that this has a chance of helping peace is if it isn't done as a package, in a
coherent manner, not just recognizing palestine. if you recognize palestine but leave your embassy in east jerusalem without moving your embassy to west jerusalem what continue to argu argue that thoo live in palestine are refugees from palestine, you are sending a terribly mixed message about what you're trying to achieve. the only way to can begin to impact is to do all of this, fully and consistently and clearly. and, finally, i speculate this may be helpful to the cause of peace because it operates in line with prospect theory that if you know process theory, he basically says that people value benefits less than they fear loss. so people are operate according to the idea that they're not trying to maximize the benefits. they are more likely to try to minimize their cost, the risk.
what i'm saying is that this policy actually will work with prospect theory. because what does it do? it basically gives of all the advantages ahead of time to can recognizing palestine from moving embassies to west jerusalem. doing all these things that were kept in the past as bargaining chips for a final status agreement will be given in advance with no expectation of return it because this benefit is less valuable than previously thought, according to prospect theory. but it would also be minimizing the loss that both sides feel. because everyone recognizes the state of palestine, for israel to recognize it, no longer becomes a huge concession. if the world no longer supports, the western world no longer supports the idea of a right of return, the palestinians by continued to dream of it but
they will no longer feel that they are losing something that the entire world supports. that would minimize perhaps a sense of loss for jerusalem in borders. so this, if it is implied fully, coherently and consistently, might actually help promote the outcome of peace by means of two states because while it gives up ahead of time all the benefits, it also substantially minimizes the cost. thank you. >> thank you. boy, that's a different. that's a very interesting and probably a little controversial. so i am going to turn the floor over to ghaith. this is a good point or is there a better way perhaps because let me just come to work. first of all this is as you said a very timely piece i think. as you mentioned, greece today
has, parliament has recognized the state of palestine and we expect the government to follow suit shortly. and i would say that as long as the negotiations are absent, and i would point to have been absent for long time to take, this issue is going to take. this is a courageous conversation did you walk into an extremely noncommercial issue. the way we usually look at this, we love third party interventi intervention, particularly is our position that if it disagrees with opposition it is unacceptable interference. so you're actually walking into quite a difficult topic. i would look at this from maybe three things. one is analytical, one is the practical, and one maybe what other option do have after? apple store with analytical, maybe jesus which approach
because i think this paper does a great job of looking comprehensive, rigorous and analytical substance of the issue. not only be described as the one of the things i found most useful about this piece is the fact you address some of the challenges that face this. in analytical terms. i will not dwell too much on these but i will just mention some that you mention in the paper including, for example, the risk of an approach like this creating more problems we would have in some countries they -- some countries did not include what happens if we end up having a wide variety of international positions? the difficulty of balancing the two challenges. on the one hand, we like to think we know what the solution looks like. i'm not sure this is accurate but it is or may not accurately
to go into high degree of specificity. the deeper you go the more disagreement you have in terms of content. so for any parameters to be useful they have to be very specific, yet as i will go into later in more detail, this is in tension with the need to create a wider coalition that pushes these issues. so how to balance the need for having a wider coalition and the need to be specific enough? these are all issues you mentioned. i would add two additional layers of adversity you do not address. the first is the fact that many of the issues we talk about are not simply highlight issues but issues that implications for other player that is intercepted we take in account. for example, you talk about the issue of -- you make some suggestions regarding current
or. -- related unrra. .com and logistical but also very, very deep political. only recently there was major pushback in jordan with the palestinian jordan felt this might affect the issue of refugees. is the only a palestinian issue, it's a jordanian issue, and wider arab and muslim issue. this is ot take into account if you want to analytical approach this issue. the second relates to the way that the unbalanced the power on the ground cannot create an implementation scenario that might disadvantage the palestinians. for example, when you talk about in the piece about the world recognizing the jewish neighborhoods of east jerusalem, as part of israel, i suspect the
postings will not be very couple with israeli sovereignty being extended. unless of these ideas reflected certain change of grade i suspect they will create high degree of unease among the palestinians and their supporters. but otherwise i would say the piece itself i think presents what i believe is the most comprehensive analytical overview of the decision. what issues would not what the analytics. my issue is with the practical implications and what about something like this can be done constructively at this time. i would argue it cannot. and cannot for diplomatic reasons and cannot for domestic, political respect i would argue right out of the region is too busy elsewhere to focus on this for properly. and into domestic come in both
among the political and israelis that domestic political configuration do not allow the leaders to actually engage in any meaningful way with any major diplomatic initiative be like this or negotiations or anything of the major diplomatic. let me talk about diplomacy. as you indicate in the paper, for this to work, for this to be meaningful it has to be undertaken by a white international accommodation to you focus on the western countries but i would also say that also has companies to arab countries as part of the coalition. why do you need the coalition? first of all to avoid the issue of confusion that i mentioned earlier. you also need to in order to deprive an exit tracker what's happened usually, said the us and a couple of european countries would say these are the parameters.
they would say fine, this is your opinion. they would quickly go to the arab world come to the friends the arab countries as i want and arab position that is contrary. so unless we have this international coalition it becomes very hard to create the kind of pressure that you need in order to get the party to respond. i would argue today because of the competing priorities in the region and think that because of that, how shall i say it? the deficits, a trust deficit the u.s. has with many of our allies i didn't see the possibility of this kind of coalition emerging. i mentioned the arab countries both because they are important to great both cover and pressure on the palestinians, but also because i think presenting international parameters right now runs a different risk. more than a decade ago the arab
league issued what's called the arab peace initiative, which has been in my view, a paradigm shift, to israel and the whole peace process. and since the arab peace initiative was issued it continues to be under criticism from a number of arab countries. discontinues. i feel if we reopen these are parameters right now without having assault air back into this will be an opening for some of the countries, everybody the want to see the api, open this file at a time when the supporters do not have the critical will to engage. so this is one practical application. the second risk is political. i will not talk of israel. you know what much more than me. i suspect the current israeli government will not be supportive, yet into showcases but also the center, center
left, many on the center-right will find this to be an occasion to engage begin entities -- on the palestinian side i think the palestinian authority right now is so weak it's going through its own legitimacy crisis that any parameters of this will be the meat of the rejected. the first person who would come out and public speak against the parameters will be the chief negotiator or members of the cabinet and whatnot. and this will create a very dangerous process. i believe that this rather than creating a debate among the palestinians it will come you that be a coming out against it and everyone tried to overtake authority. so if we think that the parameters will read energize a piece conversation i felt the current political map in
palestine does not encourage this dynamic. instead that might force the palestinians and maybe even the israelis to adopt positions that are much, much more hardline than they're willing to adopt the actual negotiations. now, given that negotiation can i don't believe that right is the time for any major diplomacy, the negotiations or. something like what is being proposed here, my question is what can be done. i believe that this moment we cannot aim too high. if we aim too high we aim for something too big into diplomatic crowd. we're going that yo check as wee learned from the last failure of negotiations can failure comes with a price. i would suggest a different way from the diplomatic engagement and let's look at maybe smaller but more concrete and more achievable engagement that we have with the party.
and i would say that the are three fronts we can engage the parties on. neither of these firms should until negotiations. i would argue now that saying no is at a premium, put an israeli and a palace in the room and asked them to negotiate what color this is. if there is a political reason why they cannot reach this kind. so we need to approach it in terms of how do we as international community, it has to be led by the u.s. because no one else can do this job. how can we engage each side to give certain deliverables to us, not to the others. i would argue you would need to engage both sides, see what they can do that is meaningful, doable but meaningful. on the palestinian side i think we need to engage the
palestinians on two fronts. the first is negative messaging. this is something we in the united states go to the post and it's a you either stop this or there's a price to pay. the second point is the issue of maintaining security for cooperation i don't think that pete has any real interest in severing cooperation but the more the talk about them with a great sense. these are two fronts i think we should be very strong with palestinians as they don't give it to israel. give it to us. that failure to get the will cost the us, not from issue. to the israelis i would argue when we engage them we can engage them in terms of what more can be done in terms of providing costing access. area c for those of you don't know if the majority of the west bank to which the palestinians have no official access. the idf has for a while been saying given the security cooperation that is a lot that
can be done to increase the palestinian access. we should engage them israeli official on tuesday give them the lead to determine action. this with a significant to create a sense of hope and motion for the palestinians. we should also in addition to these concrete steps engage the palestinians and israelis on to other to confront. a front that will preserve the possibility of a two-state solution. with the israelis i would argue, given the growing and i think very solid perception of current israeli government as being ambivalent about peace, i think we need to engage israel to do a certain action that will, we affirm israel, israel's commitment to a two-state solution. the are a number of issues i can be suggested. one of them you touched upon, i wrote this with my colleague is israel actually harmonizing its
settlement policy, meaning for areas of israel claim will be part of israel. israel can settlements there, doesn't mean the world has accepted get it is to show the israel actually has a. elsewhere israel needs to stop. this is the message that will not be the position for the palestinians but it will send a message that the israeli government is serious about doing something also. for the palestinians when you conditioned on the issue of reform. revising the issue policy reform and institutions. write out the p.a. is going through a major, major legitimacy crisis. one i make it is the p.a. corruption. win 80% of palestinians believe that their government is corrupt, when four of every five palestinians believe that they're being ruled by thieves that the government doesn't really have the standing to engage in some of the
concessions. or even some of the initiatives that we need to get to a two-state solution. and, therefore, i think it's key on it bilateral conversation. palestinians and the world. to reprioritize the issue of reforming. none of these ideas will actually get us to a two-state solution. ultimately, i believe reaching these can only be done through quiet diplomacy and through negotiation. ..
i also direct a portion of the institute's website called vira forum which is forum for dialogue. i will take the opportunity to continue this dialogue online in the forum. i would like to have comment and contributions from all of you as well. it is interesting discussion and will only get more interesting as we go on. i will pose one very quick question to each of you to open up the floor. the question or not is this. one often assumes a two-state solution means peace. i don't think that is really good assumption. they're not the same thing. you could have a palestinian state and still have conflict. so my question to you is, what about security? that's the one thing that i think sounds to me at least like
it may be missing from your very interesting new paradigm. before you answer my question to ghaith, you're saying this is something like good in theory but not in practice. my question to you, do you recommend then that outside powers somehow just back off on the big issues of recognizing palestine or dealing with the ref gee issue or issue or jerusalem or borders or other things? if that is your recommendation how is that going to happen? and how are you going to get them from stop promoting, let's say bds in europe if they don't recommend that action? einat, you first. >> i forgot to mention this paper decided only to deal with policies that are entirely
within the decision-making power of western countries. that do not require israelis or palestinians to accept, reject. things that can be done as western countries. so everything that i mentioned from recognizing palestine to moving an embassy, to the funding of unrwa and it is policies, these are in the decision making capacity of western countries. i'm seeing western countries increasingly looking to do things to things they can do without needing to engage with the sides because of all the difficulties you mentioned. the one thing that clearly can not be done through the means that reviewed here is the issue of security. nothing in all the kind of diplomatic steps that reviewed can remove a single soldier from
the west bank or candies arm a single rocket in gaza. everything that has to do with security, the occupation, ending israeli military presence in the west bank. the question of the blockade, all of these things are in the hands of the sides. and no outside power, barring military intervention, but no outside power has the tools to change that situation on the ground. so everything that has to do with security, coordination, israeli military presence, palestinians arming themselves, all of this remains the one clear issue that is in the hands of both sides. and it will need to be understood that nothing that western countries can do diplomatically will change any of that. they can take actions that would
recognize that, that would say how important it is for a palestinian state to be demilitarized or transitional israeli military presence on the jordan river or all of these things. or it could say we recognize palestine but we recognize palestine as continuing to be under military occupation. it can say these things. but there is nothing that western countries can do to change it in the absence of the will of both sides. >> thanks. you can ask short questions. i'm not sure we can give you short answers. >> let's try. >> on the word peace that you mentioned, i make my living being an expert on the peace process i'm not deciding on the word peace because it does bring to mind unrealistic expectations of fuzziness and warm feelings. we're talking about arrangements here. i think many of the points were raised are enough to create a
stable arrangement. now, can we get the world to back off? of course we can get the world to back off. one of the reasons we can't get the world to back off because this is not only important policy issue, it is political issue for almost every country i can think of in the when world. united states, greek parliament votes for palestinian state i expect it does not go through a extremely rigorous policy conversation and there are political reasons and therefore as long as this issue remains political the world -- there are levels of world intervention but typical statements even things like bilateral recognition which ultimately i think, are neither here nor there. they are not game-changers. we are used to this kind of window-dressing throughout israeli, palestinian history. what i am concerned about is the kind of an attempt to impose a
solution from the outside, on all of the parameters, without doing the homework of actually making sure this kind of political initiative could succeed. we can see two kinds of iterations how this could work. either an attempt to create u.n. security council resolution with parameters which we saw a glimpse of back in december of 2014, almost exact year from now, which was problematic because we saw then the difficulty of actually creating that kind of coalition. one of the biggest i think assets we have in diplomacy these days is international consensus on two-state solution. prematurely for a resolution that does not reflect everyone's vision of a two-state solution you might see the breaksdown or the fragmentation of international consensus. i'm not sure this is helpful.
so it is one of these things if you overreach, you might end up doing more damage than good. the second scenario which is also quite risky, i think you touch on it in the paper, is u.s. coming up with american parameters. we hear every now and then speculation that there is obama parameters before the end of the administration. this is not first time we've done it. clinton did it as he was leaves office, december, less than a month before he left the white house. it is a little bit different now. it's different in the sense that i think the biggest risk is what if we have american parameters without, without doing the homework, similar to what we had when the president spoke at the state department with aipac with partial parameters. without lining up the players i do not think it is good for u.s.
leadership and standing to come up with parameters not immediately supported by our european allies and western allies, which are not supported or which are even opposed by our arab allies. too much to expect for palestinians and israelis to endorse these kind of things. we need to show the u.s. continues to be leader on this fight. coming up with parameters do not have support, prior support of our allies will actually expose the u.s. as weak and will be viewed by people in the region as another indication that u.s. power and u.s. leadership in the region is waning. this is this something i do not think is good for u.s. leadership. >> good. i will open to the floor and take questions on the floor as i see them. mohamed. >> [inaudible]. >> mikes phone please. >> but i would like to ask both of you what you might call the
camel in the room and that is -- [inaudible] do not have leadership in either palestine or israel who are committed to peace. most leadership are committed to non-peace. they derail negotiations. they block good initiatives. they are against any effort to make peace in the area and basically it is very obvious for the palestinians because peace might lead to democracy. this will mean the end of this leadership and so, this way this leadership would like to stick to this status quo. on the other side because peace might end israeli expansionist policies with regard to settlement. so they are totally against this peace. what do we do in order to actually put the good ideas that
you might have leadership committed to no peace education. no peace ventures, no people to people and are actually very active against moderates and against the peacemakers? so what do we do with this problem? >> okay. please. >> first a couple of comments. one of the reasons i decided to do the analysis in this paper i think one of the reasons we're facing difficulties, there are many reasons, we worked on it together and difficulties for achieving peace. but some is the mixed messaging from comes from the world, that does not send a clear sense of it's either here or there. and that makes it more difficult , i must say, this is my view of the conflict in general.
i do not put a big premium on leaders in this conflict at all. i think the leaders on both sides can operate at the margins of this conflict. i think this is a conflict that goes so deep to the story of each people, their sense what is just, what is due, who they are, that leaders can not depart substantially from how each people view the essence of the conflict and what it's all about. i think leaders can operate at the margins. they have some maneuvering room at the margins. they can try to at least not make things worse, which is certainly something that in israel i would want to work. two words, if we can't make it happen tomorrow, how can we at least insure, i think this is our responsibility, to insure that we don't make it harder for
future generations to achieve it. how can we keep at least the option open but, at the end of the day i think the conflict goes so deep to the history, the sense of justice of both peoples, that when people ask me, so what is your prescription, what do you think will finally bring peace? my answer is two words, mutual exhaustion. i think when we will reach, we don't know how this will take but when we will reach a moment of mutual exhaustion, when both sides are finally what you call the big dream and the little hope. when both sides are willing to finally say, okay, the other is going nowhere. they can not be made to disappear. they can not be made to give up, surrender and go away. when there is real understanding of that. that only happens after you explore all other terrible options and you reached mutual exhaustion, then you begin to look to where it is making true
peace. >> want to comment on the palestinian side or israeli side? >> maybe you're wiser than me, einat. i think leaders have -- in when i look in the palestine israeli conflict it is made by leaders, not by people. from sadat at one end to charron charron -- charron at other end. this book marks the efforts leaders have made. they did -- than their peoples. you're wiser than me i don't see the charrons or sadats or husseins or rabins or all of them in the horizon any soon. i was trying to be diplomatic. i said political environment does not allow for leaders to enguage in diplomatic initiatives i was not going as
far as you go in your question. i can not get in leaders heads. clearly the diplomatic of show great risk-taking and great leadership abilities to be honest. that is why i'm more interested right now in putting both leadership systems to the test and getting them to a point where they can consider. i believe we should engage israel away from the pressure of having to show to the public that they're not suckers that is when it comes to palestinians on bilateral negotiation platform and have world or american-israeli engagement to see how far this leadership can go but on palestinian side as well. my belief without reform, and by reform i don't only mean technical, how to run a ministry, but deeper reforms, security sector reform, democratic governance reform, all these kind of issues, without that, not only is
current leadership incapable of reaching a decision, but we don't have system in palestinian policies that can help create leaders who will emerge. if we create the space of reform and good governance the palestinian system can start producing new leaderships. we saw with emergence of when the u.s. and world was pushing reform, it allowed reformists to emerge. i suspect we need leadership from international community to start redefining palestinian politics. >> okay, i had, there are a lot of hands up. i will really try to do this in order. i have ari, professor, and please. >> i was opening that the rebuttal would be done in swedish aspect. that perspective is kind of missing from the discussion. i would like to try to put myself in the shoes for a moment of the swedish foreign minister
who would probably say to you, we know very well about jerusalem, we know about refugees, we know about borders. we're not ignorant. we view ourselves having a role lear. we're playing a role. the role is to try if you would be honest, would put it in those terms our role is try to level the playing field somewhat. so do something in order to balance the symmetry and therefore there's no policy dissonance, or if there is a policy dissonance it is intentional because we view ourselves playing a role. as long as there is policy on israeli side, israel having all the cards advocating for or saying that it support as palestinian state but actually engaging in policies that counter that, how do you expect us not to have this kind of dissonance?
>> yeah. it is a good question. >> swedish accent if. so indeed when the swedish foreign minister made her declaration in october of 2014 recognizing palestine as an existing state, she said that she believes this would promote peace by leveling the playing field. so she justified sweden breaking rank with the international consensus of privilegeing, profiting negotiations over outcome by the fact she thinks she has certain analysis why there's no peace. the analysis is a power of asymmetry, and she thinks recognizing palestine can at least contribute to changing that. so i want to address it on two levels. she says she thinks this act will bring peace. she analyzes why she thinks
there is no peace. regardless of the analysis, i will address the analysis in a moment it sent a terrible message when she pulls out one element of all and basically says we will recognize palestine. we will continue to be one of the foremost supporter of an organization that is essentially keeps the dream of greater palestine alive, and we will also say that this promotes peace. my argument would be choose twoor three, you can't have all three. if you say palestine exists and you continue to condone the notion that those who live in palestine are refugees from palestine don't tell me this promotes peace. you're promoting the idea that the jewish people don't have the right to self-determination in this land. that's fine if you think that but don't tell me that you're promoting peace. if you want to promote peace, recognize palestine and at the
same time, but she can also do that tomorrow, say that the major donor to unrwa, you will no longer condone the idea that those who live in palestine have been born there and live there all their lives are registered as refugees from palestine. then i can believe her that she genuinely seeks peace by means of two states for two peoples. that is in terms of the message that she sends. now she has analysis. power imbalances are the source of lack of peace. i disagree with this analysis. i actually think that the power imbalance still is that the jewish people remained, remand an unwelcome minority in the middle east. and although they are powerful as a country, they are actually still a minority that is not acceptable in the region. and this is my analysis of why
we came close to peace in the '90s. i actually don't credit rabin and i don't credit arafat in that sense being great leaders. they were leaders who took advantage of an opportunity if anything in my view was created by reagan and gorbachev. those are the people i would credit more. what did they create? they created a moment in history where the arab world or some of the arab countries lost their soviet backing. america emerged as high per power. one million soviet jews were emigrating to israel. israel emerged all of a sudden in the perception as very powerful nation and arab world and palestinians lost legitimacy when they supported saddam hussein in some of the weakest moments. if you believe that at the core of the conflict lies the continued denial of the arab world that the jewish people have a right to self-determination, have a real
claim and an attachment to the land, if you believe this is at the core of the conflict, peace can only emerge when the arab world despairs of the possibility that the jewish people can somehow be made to to away. so that is the moment of parity. the moment that there is the notion that the jewish people are here to stay. then you have an opening for peace. so my analysis is exactly the opposite of the swedish foreign minister and the thing is, if you begin to have different analysis of why there's no peace, you begin to create a diplomatic arms race where every side is trying to convince that they should be strengthened for the cause of peace. that's not helpful which is why i say, if you want to be helpful be consistent across all parameters. recognize palestine. move your embassy to west jerusalem. announce your embassy in shaif
is embassy of palestine. those who live in palestine are no longer refugees from palestine, at least then i can see you really mean peace. >> okay. >> ghaith. >> couple points. reaction to einat's point, if i credit with any outside player with the madrid, oslo process, it would be george bush, h.w. bush, who authored liberation of kuwait sent two messages to the israelis and palestinians. a, you have to fear me, when my interests are being challenged, i take action to do that, and, also the region also needs something. at end of the day it was american money, american lives that actually created liberation of kuwait. which enabled the united states at that point to create the coalition that we needed to create the madrid process which ultimately produced everything.
so that is kind of, that is on one point. i disagree with you on issue of asymmetry of power. you might be describing a regional reality. when you look, zoom into the palestinian israeli conflict i would argue that this is not the case and we have a very clear power imbalance. there might be a narrative imbalance against israel's favor but certainly when it comes to power and militaristic decisions israelis are in much better place and i would argue reconciling narratives is not necessary for reaching stable arrangements. i would challenge anyone here to find more than 10 egyptians who actually like israel. who believes israel has a like to exist. it doesn't matter because egyptian-israel peace treaty survived not because of accepting a narrative, but creating arrangements that create a balance of interests. now my problem with the swedish
argument though is even if i accept that it's about imbalance of power, hard to recognize how changing of power in palestine recognizes that. doesn't move single israeli soldner the west bank or doesn't stop a single act of terrorism. it is nice symbolically. it would be nice to sew the leadership is doing something but how it plays into any implementable operational diplomatic or real difference it still eludes me, besides a symbol of what will happen and life goes on. >> i want to take you up on your challenge to find 10 egyptians who has the right to exist. they all write for ficra forum. find them there. >> to dr. wilf, you said in the beginning if we had been left alone we could have solved this.
and you hear a lot of that today. leave us alone, we can take care of this ourselves. could you elaborate on that? >> the remarkable thing about our conflict it is one of the world's smallest, least violent conflicts if you were to be crude and do a body count. i once saw a league table of violent conflicts around the world. the league table would be even worse, placed the conflict at number 49. essentially as people were really just concerned with reducing body count in the world, they would not be focusing on this conflict. and i think that having all our energy, i mean i would be out of a job but i'm okay with that, having all our energy be spent on playing out this conflict on the international stage. magnifying each and every tiny
incident. forcing us to use all our, kind of resources, best people, to playing out this thing on the international stage, i think is not helpful. i think if the conflict were placed in non-theological context of two tribes battling over, until fairly recently a resource-poor piece of land, i think we could have come to a lot of understanding and arrangements that would have allowed us to achieve something, not peace perhaps but something. in fact one of my personal criticisms of the secretary of state, and someone gave me a great quote of that, when he introduces very passionate efforts, what he failed to understand is that abbas and netanyahu long ago signed a no-peace agreement. under that no peace agreement,
for quite a few years, people were not dying. granted you don't get a nobel peace prize for people just not dying but for us, having lived through two decades of this you euphoria near peace and dissent to years of bloody intifada. just, able to wake up alive was pretty good. the not peace and occupation but the two sides were able to understand, the two leaders or non-leaders were able to understand this is as much as can be done at this moment. i think if it were brought down to that size we could have actually reached arrangements that would led us to at least the minimum live the most dignified lives we can live. >> yes? up front. >> i agree with everything you said, both of you. [laughter]. i do. >> afterwards, i want you to explain that.
>> even though the property rights of, property rights of jews who were kicked out of arab lands were not mentioned. >> it is in the piece. i didn't mention it here. >> okay but when you referred to a two-state solution you assume that the pa has control over gaza. and i think until they, these two hamas, and pa come together, i don't think you know, going to be a two-state solution. thank you. >> okay. >> two quick reactions, first of all we don't mention i didn't mention jews kicked out of arab countries. that not palestinian, israeli issue. issue for israel to take up with tunisia, iraq. we confuse palestinians. these are not the same thing in diplomatic concerns. the unity, my own view, these
two sides, should not unite. they have two very different decisions can not reconcile. to wait until there is unity to get peace, we will get no peace. time is not static. reaction what you said einat, earlier. we had time we were not killing one another. there was also a time constituency for peace was actually eroding by the day. time works in a certain way equally i think with the internal palestinian conflict. as long as hamas can claim that using violence and terrorism producing results, as they did when they abducted shalid and many other cases and as long as pa fattah, can not know deliverables working towards diplomacy, time works in favor of hamas.
some of the small ideas i came out would allow the pa to say we're getting out of something with our collaboration with israelis, they would choose once confronted with a final peace deal, either hamas narrative wins or pa narrative wins but i do not think one of the two narratives can win until we get to that moment. >> okay. david, in the back. >> thank you, einat for your paper, presentation, thank you ghaith. even though this was on beyond the yep of the paper itself, logic of you said, do this aligning policy with the preference, do it as a package deal leads you right up to the edge it seems to me of having the security council put forward parameters because the odds of 100, 200 countries synchronizing their borders, all in the same way i think we would all agree
in the practical sense probably not likely. so, it leads us all to there. you could even argue in the absence of it or ori's point becomes salient. left to their own devices. they're not out to create a cosmic sense of justice. they want to put their thumb on the scale because they feel the israel -- israelis have more power so they will not come up with a grand balance of their own. explain why, even though it is beyond the scope of the paper for methodological reasons, why is it it about idea. >> why is it about idea to do what? >> have security council solution. parameters, there is 50/50 chance the administration might do after the november election. >> i would say, this is where we get into the theory and the practice and i don't deny what i printed has major practical
challenges which is why also countries are choosing what i call the easy way. they recognize palestine. they're not going to deal with all the implications. sweden will announce it is not opening an embassy in ramallah, let it be that and continue to fund unrwa. i want to define why that is deeply unhelpful and why it sends a very, very problematic message about what the world is trying to achieve and in many ways what i'm saying if you can't do that coherently and consistently please don't do anything because what you're doing in the middle sends the most problematic message of all. so i wanted to present what a coherent, smart, strategy would wok like, given the practical problems, i would at least prefer that the alternative would not be to do a halfway
detrimental job but to not do anything. if i knew that there is a real chance, somehow the stars aligned and there is a real chance to put forward a security council resolution, and in the paper i mentioned that after years of what was considered constructive ambiguity, which was destructive, now we know that we need constructive specificity. we need to be very clear on the details. if there was a chance for a coalition around a detailed proposal that addresses all the issues and essentially confuses side and gives israeli assembly in jerusalem and ends essentially world recognition and world support of the right of return but gives the palestinian their capital jerusalem and a state, it would confuse the sides. but if there was a transto have
a true specific package that addresses all of these issues i would support it. >> good. i want to make one quick note for the historical record. believe it or not in the u.n. resolutions that admitted palestine, first an observer and then as a member state of the organization with some qualifications, jerusalem is recognized as israel's capital, believe it or not. if you look at those u.n. documents you will see that the resolution that the palestinian authority itself submitted to the united nations recognizes jerusalem as the capital, both of israel and of palestine. that is just a historical footnote but leads me to a much more fundamental issue that i want to just mention which is, security council resolution, security council resolution, so what? does everybody listen to every single security council
resolution? if governments adopt a policy does that mean the parties will carry it out in practice? probably not. so that's something we also need to keep in mind as we consider the diplomacy and the limits of outside intervention or non-intervention. yes. in the back. >> i want to thank you both, fascinating. okay. i do want to say that i think that your ideas are interesting and compelling, however like was said, it doesn't work in a vacuum and i wanted to ask you what you think the role of public opinion, specifically maybe in the u.s., it being a leader and maybe in other countries as well to promote certain solutions that might be effective in the long term? >> so my personal views and one of the reasons i'm publishing this, speaking here, will continue to speak about it i think public opinion matters.
we see public opinion having an impact on the recognition of palestine. i want to highlight why that in itself is not helpful. and if the publics can be made aware to the need for more coherent and package approach maybe ultimately that will have some political impact as well. >> howard. >> thank thank you. great presentation. rye he wily, really enjoyed it and i think i agree we're really not at the point where u.s. or any other western powers can put a parameters paper on the table as a security council resolution, whatever but i'm not sure, ghaith, that the things you propose instead will really get us any place. on the palestinian side, you say well, we need them to reduce incitement and to maintain security cooperation.
basically, we have the security cooperation. have had it for some time and on the incitement issue, that is kind of in the eye of the beholder and it is very complicated and spills on to both sides. on the israeli side you suggest that we open up access to area c which we've been trying to do since the days of george mitchell. we've made virtually no progress on it. my question on that would be, how do you see us making progress on it? but even more what else can be done to really show israeli commitment to the palestinian state? and, i think the idea that israel completely freeze settlements is just something that is so politically impossible right now, basically what you're saying we'll put this off tore another decade or who knows how long will have this government. on palestinian side you talk about reform, and i say same thing. we've been trying to reform
palestinian authority since 1994. it is almost impossible. as it stands, palestine if it were a start sort of the form in now, doesn't look that much worse than states admitted to the u.n. we have southern sudan. we have kosovo. i don't think transparent government is hallmark of either of those. the difference here that we're holding palestine to different standards because of the political and security aspects which is largely based on the land issues and contention over narratives. so, can you say something about how you could see those ideas moving us along a little bit faster? >> i would actually disagree with you on very basic point. i actually don't believe we've been trying to do either of these things, at least the last few years. during the mitchell times and when kerry was doing it, reform, even developments on the ground
were really, if i want to be charitable i would say they were a distant second. if i want to be a less charitable i would say they would be a footnote. we were so fixated on the high diplomacy, we actually did not really put that much effort in trying to get the sides to change their behavior. we would use it in a meeting but these things might not be mentioned in the preamble of the meeting but never really get discussed, not at the principals level. i would disagree, at least in the past we talk about the issue of palestinian reform, we have actually managed to make some interesting progress once the international community created coalitions that were serious and sustained about creating palestinian governance. what george bush did with issue of the road map and doing the reforms that followed the road map showed that when you have a very strong international
coalition, that gave the palestinians no exit ramp, that was as having arabs part of this formal coalition, the palestinians ended up making significant developments. making developments under prime minister fayad that were i would say transformed the nature of the palestinian government. now you're absolutely right, governance and transparency are no preconditions to statehood, even though international practice is changing in this way yet i would argue they are precondition to stability. and if to that is model what i have for future of palestinian state i'm not sure this is a model i want to follow. i do not believe if you do not have -- one of the lessons we learn from arab spring, we do not have a solid social contract between people and government and part of the social contract is clean governance the government will not be stable. i repeat none of these things will actually get us to a peace
deal. but what some of these things might do, create some degree of a more conducive environment that would allow diplomacy to operate. right now diplomacy is not possible, nor is creating a political environment to push for diplomacy is possible unless we tackle more of these issues. >> we have time for two last questions. i see them right there. then the gentleman in the back. >> i have a question about -- [inaudible]. so israel will be accepted in the arab world. the other is about land. when you say about -- how do you reconcile the peace initiative? >> please. >> ultimately the question of legitimacy is manifested in two-ways. at least up until now every time that there was a clear and
distinct opportunity for the arab palestinians to have a state but this would have meant forgoing the idea of return, basically coming finally and for all, with the idea that the jewish people have an equal claim to the land, they are homed there. they are not interlopers, not colonialists, not crusaders, at least today that was too high of a price to pay. the arab peace initiative emerged from a particular moment and everything rests on the interpretation of what they talk about, a just solution for the refugee problem. it is a take it or leave it initiative and the arabs never basically made overtures of such saddat did, let's sit and negotiate, this negates the jewish right to self-determination. so until i see a clear statement that says, we accept that the
jewish people have an equal claim to the land, they are as indigenous as we are, they are as home as we are, their right and our right are both not superior and not exclusive, i will know that we are at the moment of peace. real peace. not a set of arrangements. but as long as the issue of return, the refugees continues to be covered in language of just without people being very specific to say, those who live in the west bank and gaza are no longer refugees. those are citizens of jordan are no longer refugees. whatever the palestinian people, have a right to self-determination and have a law of return in the state they will have, but they don't have a right of return. sometimes i'm even willing to go to what i would call a extreme left-wing and extreme right-wing position. i'm willing to recognize equal rights of returns of both jews
and arabs to entirety of land if both agree equally to renounce the implementation of their right. as long as that exists, there is still no, i don't see a real acceptance. and in that sense, egypt still, jordan still, they don't have peace with israel. they have no, we don't attack you agreements which have held up very well but a real acceptance of the jewish people as equal, indigenous claimants to the land is sadly missing and in my view is the a the core of the conflict. >> ghaith, if you want to quick. >> maybe the lawyer in me is always uncomfortable with bringing -- >> i was waiting for that to come out. >> it is christmastime. so look, i'm always uncomfortable with bringing in issues of narrative into the diplomatic and legal negotiations simply because i do not believe that diplomats and lawyers are the best equipped or
the most appropriate actors to define narrative for their peoples. so i'm content with arrangements but if i may, a word on the arab peace initiative. first of all, when it talks about the refugees, the doesn't always talk about a just solution to refugee problem but talks about a just and agreed. when i used to be palestinian official, every time i write a piece i would be asked to highlight, under sign, bolden the word agreed. >> both sides have a veto, not just israel. >> absolutely but that is nature of any deal. but, i think the way i understand arab peace and at least jordanians and saudis understood it once they presented it, it is substantive formula. it was made very lose in order not to impose a solution on the other side but in order to
create space and framework for either side to agree on. so i thinkexpect arabs to come to put substantive solutions and make concessions is not actual objective. i think objective was to say to palestinians on one hand, it is kosher for you to make concessions because of agreed parameters. and to the israelis to say here is the initial incentive. reach a peace deal, you not only get palestinians but get the rest of us with you. there are not many mistakes. whether it was perceived all or nothing, all of that, but i think to shift it from supportive framework to alternative negotiation framework i think would simply not work. >> okay, you know, i'm going to have to apologize. we've run over time already, which is a sign of how interesting and provocative this discussion was in a good way. i want to thank all of you for coming and your interesting and important questions and i
[applause] >> thank you very much, jeffrey herbst my honor to be here with such a distinguished panel. you could not ask for three individuals who care more about this issue and i know have a lot they want to say. so we'll get right to it. howard buffett, i will start with you. you're the one who was driving force behind this. take us back to the beginning. why was this something that mattered to you? we know you came from a farming background but there was, were other things going on in your family. why this? >> not much. i was teaching warren how to invest. [laughter] but other than that, not much.
you know, i had a mother that spent her entire life really dedicated to helping people. so i think all of us kids grew up in a household where we were really expected to give back to the community. and of course we had every opportunity in our lives to do what we wanted to do in many ways. and i think, my dad explains it, best when he talks about the ovarian lottery, you could be born in bangladesh, you could be born in yemen, you could be born in malawi, could be born to parents that are divorced or criminals or handicapped with challenges of providing a living. you could have all sorts of scenarios that could develop but you were born, in my case, you know, white, male, in the united states. and that gave you every opportunity to excel in life
that you could ever ask for. and hopefully, you know he, those demographics are changing over time but when i came into this world that was the best situation you could probably find yourself in in the world. so i think, you know, we knew that. we appreciated that. and my parents had high expectations that we would go out in the world and do some things that are productive and positive. so i think the big driver was, how i grew up and what my parents expected of me. >> what was it about food insecurity and about the african continent that attracted? >> well, when we finally got some real money to spend, you know, i was just immediately attracted to trying to figure out where the most impoverished populations, where are those areas where resources are very scarcer or limited and those are the places i was attracted to.
so we do a lot of work in central america, some in mexico but africa has some of the biggest challenges, especially food security in terms of agricultural production and malnutrition. so it was really the kinds of unfortunately, the kinds of populations we wanted to try to work with and those particular issues. so that is how we ended up doing a lot in africa. >> there is a lot to talk about in terms of your interests what you have seen and what you have learned. but i do want to bring in prime minister blair and emanuel de merode, somewhere along the way you got to know the two of them. something else grew out of that. tell me how all of this got started. >> i went to see the -- first time in uganda in 1997, and it was really phenomenal experience. if anybody says what one thing should i do in my life to say something, go see the mountain
gorillas. doing it when you're young after the hiking. and i have taken my son and i have taken other people. it is really something. so that kind of captured my attention. and then i met a great woman, annette, who i think is maybe here tonight and ran the international gorilla conservation program, igcp. she kept wanting to come have dinner with me. i noticed she had phd behind her names.i% i didn't want any phd to come have dinner with me. i kept putting her off, putting her off and finally she showed up. i realized what amazing job she was doing and that kind of hooked into me the region. we've done all the countries in the great lakes region. that kind ever got me hooked. when i met emma. [uel, in -- emanuel, in 2009 we went up to the park in january 2009, he had been there as chief warden for the year.
i realized challenges he had. it brought everything together. it brought the conservation piece. it brought the poverty piece. it brought the conflict piece and brought the agricultural piece. people had a lot of trouble with productivity around the park and people were encroaching on the park. it brought all the pieces together. emmanuel, he has an impossible job, but that is the kind of challenge i love. we really started working with emmanuel. we're doing a lot with him now and we're doing it because he was there. when i met tony, it was funny because kate who worked for tony for a long time, kept saying in these emails, why do i want to meet prime minister -- what am i going to do with this guy? [laughter] and so she said in the emails, oh, you know what i'm busy in october this year, sorry. then i was on this plane
somewhere and i got this article and read, this was a long article. and i read this article, i said god, this guy is doing exactly what has to happen in africa. we can do everything with emmanuel, what is one thing we don't have? we don't have rule of law and we don't have governance. so everything could be undermined just like that. i thought, man, i got to email kate back. and apologize for everything i said. and then he came out, tried to run my combine. ran some corn down had a hard time. we were walking out to the combine and i think kate who says, howard, he has not driven anything for 12 years. [laughter]. so you're going to put him in this thing? and the truth is, it's a rare thing to have someone with tony's experience and commitment that that can really go to other leaders -- he has been a leader.
he has run a country in a certain sense. so to have someone who can show up at the doorstep and share the same experience and talk about what's needed is really, really rare. so they're both very special people to me and to our foundation. >> i can't wait to ask prime minister blair about the combine and rest of it. >> he won't tell the truth on that. [laughter] >> but kind of do this chronological order, emmanuel, i will come to think, when you were approached by howard buffett. >> you don't have to tell the truth. >> i will try not to. yeah, it was a while ago. howard came to the congo at a very, very difficult time for us. i should start by saying you know, i'm, you know, my function, my position, who i am is middle ranking public servants in the congoees
administration, but i got put into the situation which is management of a national park which is a very large park and epicenter of a war for 20 years that turned out to be the most brutal war, the greatest expression of human suffering since the second world war. and everyone of those wars over that period of 20 years started either inside or immediately around the national park that we managed. so, i only just started as park warden and i hadn't fully gathered the difficulty. >> this is back in the late '90s when -- >> yeah. and then howard turned up. that's when i realized my problems were just beginning. [laughter] >> hold that last chat. >> so, it was -- >> i mean what happened? did he actually come to you, come to --
>> howard came to. howard has a long history with trying to address these fundamental problems in the great lakes region which is enormous challenges to overcome. and but he offered us for the first time not just the possibility of somebody coming with a certain generosity in terms of resources but the time to think through the problems that we were addressing. and was actually willing to come to the field, even when, you know, even given the insecurity, during times of armed conflict and work through these problems with us. so that's really been the story, is working through these, sometimes overwhelming problems in eastern congo. >> look we'll talk about them. i want to hear the beginning though of the howard buffett story from prime minister blair's point of view. you were trying, at least your office was trying to set up an
appointment with him. it wasn't working until this wonderful article appeared. >> i shouldn't have told that story, sorry. >> i always thought he was really keen to meet me. [laughter]. now i know. no, it was well, i did, as he said i eventually got to see him. i thought it was first time i ever asked but i did get to see him. once more i got to drive the combine harvester which was an interesting experience. >> scary. >> only time i ever seen howard really nervous actually, kept telling me, cost a lot of money, this piece of machinery. >> but take us back. >> the essence of it is for me issue of governance in africa is absolutely fundamental because when i was prime minister, we did, africa was a big part of the agenda. in 2005 at the g8 summit we put
africa on agenda. we got commitments to give debt relief to african countries. we have commitment to aide. u.s. uplifted their aide substantially as well but i was aware of the fact aide was never going to be enough on its own. you also had to build the capacity to govern properly. and so after frick came together with my other passion. . .
you run for office as a great campaigner. you get into office, you have to become a chief executive. you have to run the organization. so i became successful with the approaches of governance, and when i saw what african presidents and prime ministers were struggling with, enormous challenges and problems, they often didn't have the infrastructure of decision-making and organization around them to enable to do it properly. the purpose of the african government initiatives as we put teams of people in, work in the country, alongside the president's team. i worked with the president and we go for prioritization and then the execution capability within government to get things done which is the biggest challenge.