In August 2014, after a severe Israeli-Hamas battle, concepts had been floated about what to do with Gaza, in a confidential choices paper supplied to The Times. It said, presciently, that “a return to the status quo ante will produce a new war” and that the Palestinian Authority is “too weak and divided to govern.”
The finest answer, the paper urged, was authorizing United Nations forces to regulate Gaza’s borders whereas Palestinian militias are disbanded and disarmed and the Israeli and Egyptian blockade of Gaza is progressively lifted. In 2014, the paper presumed that Hamas would nonetheless management Gaza however may conform to reasonable its habits in return.
The paper additionally identified that the present U.N. Truce Supervision Organization, based in 1948, retains a authorized mandate to patrol Gaza, despite the fact that it left in 1996 after the Oslo Accords. Under a reconfigured mandate, UNTSO might each patrol Gaza’s borders and assist disarm militias, whereas one other present worldwide committee would coordinate donor assist.
Nine years later, the paper could function a place to begin. If Hamas and related teams are destroyed in Gaza, as Israel vows, maybe UNTSO might assist hold the peace inside Gaza too as a sort of supplementary police power whereas the standing and credibility of the Palestinian Authority are someway resurrected there.
The 2014 dialogue was actual, stated Robert Serry, a Dutch diplomat who served because the U.N. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process. “We had hoped that the Palestinian Authority could be brought back,” he stated.
While which may be as unrealistic now as then, every time “we allowed the situation to go back to the status quo,” with a fragile cease-fire and “minimum arrangements to keep Gaza afloat,” Mr. Serry stated.
Now, he stated: “I hope Israel learns a lesson. If they keep ignoring the Palestinian question, it will from time to time explode, it’s just a question of when.”