Next week, we shall be marking the 15th anniversary of Israel’s peace agreement with Jordan. The first anniversary was celebrated by the two states with a joint air show above Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Amman. During the event, helicopters carried giant flags of the states.
And now, compare that to the way we shall be marking the 15th anniversary.
Indeed, we have heard some harsh and justified charges against the Hashemite kingdom in respect to the way it has conducted itself since the signing of the peace treaty. However, we too should be engaging in a process of self-reflection.
We have failed in fully grasping Jordan’s sensitivities, a country whose population includes a significant number of Palestinians, each one of whom has relatives in the West Bank.
And what else have we failed to do? (I am talking about both Jordanians and Israelis, who are equally at fault here.) We did not make sure that every Jordanian citizen enjoys the fruit of peace. Indeed, this peace deal has been almost entirely confined to the royal palace.
And so, on the 15th anniversary of this peace treaty, all that remains is to ask: Did it really happen, or were we just dreaming?
The good old timesAnd while we are at it, how pleasant it is to recall the good old days we experienced 15 years ago. A random examination of the pages of Yedioth Ahronoth from October 1994 prompts all sorts of thoughts and a sense of longing.
My colleague, Shimon Shiffer, reported from the United States on the events marking the 50th anniversary of the United Nations’ establishment. He wrote about the 180 leaders who arrived in New York in order to take part in the various ceremonies, and about the “dozens of leaders who stood in line in order to shake Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin’s hand.”
Dozens of leaders from all over the world? A handshake with our prime minister drawing such great interest? Joint photographs? Oh, how pleasant and how sad it is to reminisce about those days.