The Search for Détente offers a unique perspective on the latest effort to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.
The Search for Détente offers a unique perspective on the latest effort to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. By setting the peace talks within the context of political events in the Middle East and beyond, Neville Teller offers an authoritative overview on why the Israel-Palestine situation remains so intractable. Beginning in the spring of 2012, against the background of the still-raging Arab Spring, The Search for Détente provides the context within which US Secretary of State John Kerry began his efforts to bring the two sides to the negotiating table. It records the optimism at the start of the process, when all agreed that nine months would be sufficient to resolve the issues, and how cold reality led to Kerry shifting the goalposts to achieve just a “framework agreement”, which might, or might not, allow the parties to go on talking. From the end of 2012 until the formal end to the discussions in April 2014, events crowded thick and fast in the Middle East and beyond – from Israel’s incursion into Gaza to end Hamas’s indiscriminate rocket attacks on civilians, the start of the Syrian civil war and Assad’s use of chemical weapons, to the overthrow of Egypt’s President Morsi. Teller also looks at Russia’s growing influence in averting a US military strike on Syria, in brokering discussions on Iran’s nuclear programme and in invading Ukraine and annexing Crimea. These events, and others, provide an insightful perspective on this latest effort to bring a resolution to the Israel-Palestine conflict.