I’ve meant to write something called “Syria to the Rescue” for a while now, but Gershon Baskin, co-CEO of the Israel Palestine Center for Research and Information (IPCRI), is stealing my thunder in advocating “The Syrian option,” in his recent article on Ynet, excerpted below:
…. An end to the conflict in Lebanon that will not lead to the next round of fighting or to the internal destruction of Lebanon… is bringing Syria into a peace process with Israel. Syria must be brought… in [also] to end the Iran-Syria alliance.
Syria must be brought into the process … to allow the government of Lebanon to rein in Hizbullah and allow Hizbullah to become another political movement that is not a “state within a state.” The government of Lebanon will not be able to rein in Hizbullah without Syria’s backing….
Syria can be brought into the process if the United States provides Syria with sufficient assurances that it will gain significantly, both in terms of US and Western financial support and investments in Syria and by knowing that the Golan Heights will be returned to Syrian sovereignty in exchange of peace with Israel.
The United States should indicate its willingness to support Syria through public and private diplomacy. Syria should demonstrate its intentions by closing its border with Iraq preventing insurgency there, it should immediate stop the flow of weapons to Hizbullah and it should close the offices of Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Damascus….
Israel should receive US assurances that the Golan will remain demilitarized and that an effective and robust multinational force will guarantee the peace of the Golan.
These steps would allow Israel and Lebanon to reach a cease fire and a peace deal that will include the Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora’s seven points plan and the UN Security Council Resolution for a long term cease fire, an effective and robust multinational force in south Lebanon and the full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1559….