“Oslo was the greatest idea Israel ever had. It let them continue the occupation without paying any of the costs.”

–Mustafa Barghouti

 

Yitzhak Rabin, and Yasir Arafat shaking hands as soon as “instrument of Palestinian surrender” that was Oslo Accords signed at the White House.

 

In the year of Lord 1993, September 13 was a day of hope to many. It was the day when Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) Negotiator Mahmoud Abbas signed the “Oslo Accord” at White House. The Oslo Accords marked the first time Israel and PLO formally recognised one another. For many, the “Accords” would settle the dispute and peace would rule no sooner than late.

Over the period of time, however, the scepticism of Edward Said regarding Oslo Accords prevailed over all hopes that were born then. Said who criticised the PLO leadership severely for the agreement, as he deemed it a flawed and saw it more unfavourable to most of the Palestinian people. Said called the deal “An instrument of Palestinian surrender, a Palestinian Versailles.”

Some 25 years later, we know that Israel merely used the agreements to justify the further expansion of illegal settlements in the territories it occupied in 1967. Till this day, Israel, which is the occupying power in this case, didn’t honour any single clause of these Accords. Even more than two decades on, the peace remains as elusive as ever.