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George W. Bush Administration: Speech Outlining Views on Peace in Post-Arafat Era

(December 1, 2004)

And we will stand with the Palestinian and Israeli peoples and help end the destructive conflict between them. Prime Minister Martin has expressed the desire of his government to take a broader role in the quest for peace and democracy, and America welcomes your involvement. It's a time of change and a time of hope in that region.

We seek justice and dignity, and a viable independent and democratic state for the Palestinian people. We seek security and peace for the state of Israel, a state that Canada, like America, first recognized in 1948. These are worthy goals in themselves, and by reaching them, we will also remove an excuse for hatred and violence in the broader Middle East.

Achieving peace in the Holy Land is not just a matter of pressuring one side or the other on the shape of a border or the site of a settlement. This approach has been tried before, without success. As we negotiate the details of peace, we must look to the heart of the matter, which is the need for a Palestinian democracy. The Palestinian people deserve a peaceful government that truly serves their interests, and the Israeli people need a true partner in peace.

Our destination is clear: two states, Israel and Palestine, living side-by-side in peace and security. And that destination can be reached by only one path, the path of democracy and reform and the rule of law. If all parties will apply effort, if all nations who are concerned about this issue will apply goodwill, this conflict can end and peace can be achieved. And the time for that effort and the time for that goodwill is now.

Sources: The White House