Thursday, 24 July 2014

Peace Talks

If you Google the phrase, you get, for example, the following list of combatants/opponents:

Israel v Fatah/Hamas

Afghanistan v Pakistan/Taliban

Colombia v FARC

Ukraine v Russian separatists

Now, we now that these talks are doomed to failure, as the parties will never agree with each other.

But what we ought to try at least, is invite all eight parties to Geneva and choose random pairs to hold talks (like the World Cup draw).

So the Israeli negotiating team ends up sitting down with FARC; Russian separatists go face to face with Colombia; Ukraine meets up with Fatah/Hamas, and so on.

They can have a gay old chat with each other, have a good moan about respective grievances and problems, their aims and goals but will agree they have no actual differences.

So FARC agrees that it will not try to overthrow the Israeli state and Israel agrees that it will not interfere in the Central American drug trafficking and kidnapping business etc, they sign a mutual non-agression and free trade pact and become best mates.

After the first round, lots are drawn again until every team has negotiated with six other teams, each time shaking hands and getting on famously.

In the final round, a few days later once everybody is nice and relaxed and in a conciliatory mood, negotiating teams sit down with their original opponents.

With a bit of luck, in the final round, they'll be so caught up in the mood that they will actually kiss, compromise and make up.

10 comments:

ageing man said...

but heaven help those that get Rooney on their negotiation team.... we're all doomed... doomed I tell ya...

The notion you promote is nevertheless quite revolutionary....which means to say it is bound to fail...

Having spent half a century seeing news reports about failure of negotiations, it tends to be the venue and the type of biscuits that fook it all up....

We can but live in hope...

Ben Jamin' said...

Or they could all agree to set up a "common wealth" pact.

Whereby all taxes are abolished and the all get an equal share of land rents.

Yipee!

Mark Wadsworth said...

AM, there wouldn't just be biscuits, there'd be canapés and stuff.

BJ, you cannot overestimate the degree to which some people hate each other, regardless of how much it costs them, they will never make peace. Unless we trick them into it.

I'd love to be a fly on the wall at the Israel-North Korea talks, where the former admits they have nuclear weapons but pretend not to and the latter admits that they don't but pretend they do.

Ben Jamin' said...

@ mw

Going on the Harrison hypothesis, all this hatred and fighting invading and ethnic cleansing boils down to one thing.

Do I think this is simplistic? I'm not sure to be honest.

He may just have a point.

ageing man said...

tusch... me and my working class back ground.... biscuits.... I would be no good at this world peace malarky.... what are canapes any way ? some sort of posh missile ?

Mark Wadsworth said...

BJ, George or Fred?

And no it doesn't, ethnic "differences" are so deep rooted, despite having no foundation in logic or in fact that simple "money" will not solve it.

AM, "canapes" are like big umbrellas or awnings or something, you stand underneath them when it's drizzling or the sun is too bright.

Ben Jamin' said...

@ MW,

i agree, "money" on it's own doesn't solve it. Ethic divisiveness is very deep rooted. But then again, what could be a more deep rooted solution than sharing the Earth and it's wealth, equally. What could be more unifying than that?

Could be just the ticket for showing all the racial/ethnic/political divisions for what it is. Fake.

Mark Wadsworth said...

BJ, I genuinely don't get it.

Imagine a Catholic Irish family and a Protestant Irish family meet up - by coincidence - on holiday somewhere where there are no other English speakers or Christians. Do they start firebombing each other or get on famously?

I assume the latter, so why do they behave differently when they get home?

What if while they are on holiday, some cataclysmic event wipes the whole of Ireland (N and S) off the map and they can't go home. Would they renew their grievances or put differences aside and get on with it?

Ben Jamin' said...

Economic injustice weaves its dark legacy over generations.

In the case of Palestine, since civilisation began.

ageing man said...

Aaah so Steve Mclaren was the .... Wally with the canapé ....

I now see your analogy with the World Cup ....

In which case I hope to win £150 on Hamas... In extra time after a scud shootout....

http://newageingman.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/new-shoes.html