Blinken’s Mission

The war in Gaza continues, adding urgency to every attempt to relieve the suffering as soon as possible. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is making such an effort.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is right to return to the Middle East and to try to mediate. The people in the Gaza Strip need to be better protected and to receive more humanitarian aid. The parties must resume negotiations for the release of the hostages kidnapped by Hamas in its bloody attack on Israel on Oct. 7.

Just as urgent are discussions about the question of how Israel should deal with the radical Islamist organization Hamas after the war. The plan that Benjamin Netanyahu’s administration has proposed is unsatisfactory. According to the plan, once fighting ceases, neither Hamas nor an Israeli civil administration will control Palestinian territory. But it remains unclear who would oversee life there.

The proposals of some right-leaning extremist Israeli ministers that Gaza should be resettled and the Palestinians forced to emigrate is troubling. If the Israeli extremists win out and transform the two-state solution into a one-state solution, it will have horrific consequences for the entire region. Instead of quelling the conflict, the extremists’ plan would fuel it. The conflagration that we have been fearing would then become more likely.

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