Key steps for a just and lasting Middle East peace

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The most volatile tinderbox area of the world where the danger of war exists is the Middle East. The key to peace and stability in the region is the establishment of an independent Palestinian state. In 1947 when the United Nations General Assembly voted to establish the state of Israel, they also voted to establish an independent Palestine along side Israel. That decision has never been carried out. Until the Palestinian state is established the region will remain unstable.

The basis for peace and peaceful relations among all nations is mutual respect and coexistence even though social, economic and political systems may differ. However a precondition for this system of relations in the Middle East is the establishment of a free, independent and equal Palestinian state, a state which will be an equal partner in this system of relations.

In the 21st century, war is not the solution to solving differences. Sharp differences exist between the imperialist countries and Iran around nuclear questions. It is imperative that these differences be solved through diplomacy. This is the lesson of the rush to war in Iraq. The U.S. invasion was based on the lie that Iraq had or would imminently have weapons of mass destruction

The same type of unfounded claim is being made in relation to Iran by Israel and U.S. imperialism - that Iran is preparing to make nuclear weapons. Iran says they are using enriched uranium for peaceful nuclear power. No international inspectors have ever found evidence to the contrary. The fact is that Iran is a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and Israel, which possesses several hundred nuclear weapons, has refused to sign this treaty. Israel is threatening preemptive strikes against Iran. Additionally, crippling sanctions which are doing severe harm to the people have been placed on Iran, led by the U.S, and U.S. naval warships threateningly patrol the area.

A "preemptive" strike against Iran would probably bring about a widespread conflagration in the region with devastating human and economic results for people throughout the region. There are no military solutions.

What is urgently needed is a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East with the elimination of all weapons of mass destruction under the supervision of the United Nations. Sanctions against Iran should be lifted immediately and diplomatic solutions should be negotiated. All naval vessels should be withdrawn from the area. International commerce should be allowed to proceed without the threatening presence of warships. The right to peaceful existence of every state in the region must be guaranteed, including, Israel, Iran and an independent Palestinian state.

Photo: Protest in Iran. Jeremy Hunsinger // CC 2.0