After ten years of negotiations,
environmentalists and common sense have triumphed over a developer’s plans.
The Valley of the Gazelles is to remain a green area,
just a little too late for the wildlife that once lived there.
How many more years of negotiations will it take to develop the park?
All of Jeruasalem wins that this central,
last undeveloped spot near the Jerusalem Botanical Gardens
will remain as a public, natural space.
Negotiations for the release of Gilad Shalit,
the captured Israeli soldier, are still the “buzz” in the news.
Everyone wants Gilad Shalit home;
no one envies his parents in their quest for his safe return.
The question in these protracted negotiations is-at what cost?
How many terrorists are to be released for one captured Israeli soldier?
Those in Jerusalem passing the tent set up by Shalit supporters
near the Prime Minister’s residence cannot help but count the days.
Volunteers, preparing yellow ribbons,
wish him home for a very happy Hanukah.
With the Muslim feast Id al-Adha this past week,
talks have again slowed down,
so the press can only guess the outcome of negotiations.
But from the other side of the street,
relatives of those murdered do not want
to see their children’s convicted murderers
free to kill again.
Many Jerusalemites were surprised this week to discover
that the Gilo neighborhood with 8,200 households
would be called a settlement.
The settlement freeze announced by Prime Minister Netanyahu
should be a step towards renewed negotiations with PA.
Meanwhile, on the streets…
On Saturday night, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat
stated that Jerusalem should not be up for negotiation.
In the Middle East negotiations usually mean ‘win or lose.’
His vision is a united city open to all,
” divided cities fail,” he said.
Not up for negotiations,
Government limousines waited over an hour
while the President of Costa Rica Oscar Sanchez visited
the Kotel, the Western Wall on Friday and …we still need more rain.
Updated: March 19, 2015,
as the Valley of Gazelles is ready to open,
Gilad Shalit is long home,
and Bibi is re-elected.
And those negotiations with PA?