By Everett Mendelsohn

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Extra resources for A Compassionate Peace: A Future for the Middle East: A Report Prepared for the American Friends Service Committee

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By 1969, when Golda Meir became prime minister, her coalition partner, the National Religious Party, had developed strong interests in retaining the territories. N. Resolution 242, which included Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories in return for peace and secure borders. By October 1973 and the outbreak of a new Arab-Israeli war, tens of thousands of Israelis had settled in previously Arab territories largely in the greatly expanded city of Jerusalem already governed by Israeli law. Israel claims this was in response to rising Palestinian nationalism and Arab states designation of the PLO as the legitimate representative of the Palestinians; neither the PLO nor the Arab states fully accept 242 as a basis for negotiations.

14 I A COMPASSIONATE PEACE feated the Israelis at the Suez Canal and crossed into the Sinai penin­ sula. Although the war was fought to a stalemate and much territory was recaptured by the Israelis, the Egyptians and Syrians who fought acquitted themselves extremely well in the eyes of the Arab world. The image of defeat that the Arab nations found humiliating in 1967 was reversed. One school of analysis links Sadat's victory in 1973 to his surprising and important trip to Jerusalem in 1977. S.

For most Palestinians it is the representa­ tive of their nationalist activities, especially in the international arena. " 6 The Soviet Union and many nations of the Third World accord formal diplomatic status to the PLO, and most West European nations now maintain some form of unofficial relations with the PLO. At this time The Palestinians I 43 it is an illusion to believe that some other group exists that can speak on behalf of the Palestinians or engage in any serious negotiations for Palestinians without PLO involvement or endorsement.

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