Hanan Greenberg
January 4, 2011 - 1:00am

Israel must do everything in its power to reach a peace agreement with the Palestinians, Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Tuesday.

During a visit to the Tze'elim army base in south Israel, Barak said there was no progress on the Syrian track and that Israel should focus its efforts on jumpstarting the negotiations with the Palestinians.

The defense minister said that in Israel's "complex" reality, the government has a responsibility to seek every possible way to reignite the peace process with the Palestinians and pursue peace on a regional level.

"The international community tends to adopt the Palestinian point of view, and we must fight the delegitimization of Israel," Barak said.

During his tour of the base the defense minister told soldiers taking part in a company commanders' course that 2010 "was the calmest year, as far as security is concerned, since you were in fifth or sixth grade, but still, our environment has not changed.

"What you are doing here is learning the basics in order to be prepared for war. If that decisive hour comes, we trust you to be ready," he told the soldiers.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017