Independent Task Force for the Strengthening of Palestinian Public Institutions

The Task Force Report on “Strengthening of Palestinian Public Institutions,” a project of the U.S./Middle East Project that was funded by the European Commission and the Government of Norway, was the first comprehensive and systematic assessment of the institutions of the Palestinian Authority. Published in 1999, the study examined the Palestinian Authority’s structure and procedures, its ability to set priorities and allocate resources, and its transparency and accountability.

The goal of the study was a practical one – to determine what works, what does not work, why not, and how to fix it, providing practical and detailed guidelines for the development of sound institutions and good governance.

The Task Force’s report helped guide the efforts of the Palestinian Authority and international institutions – the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the European Union, the United Nations and the international donor community – to improve the efficiency and credibility of the emerging Palestinian self-governing institutions.

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General Brent Scowcroft, Eric Melby and Henry Siegman

General Brent Scowcroft, Eric Melby and Henry Siegman

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Will Greater Israel Transform into Greater Palestine?

The future for Israelis and Palestinians has never been bleaker than it is now, in the wake of the savage assault by two Palestinians on Jewish worshippers in a Jerusalem synagogue.

The trauma of the event falls most heavily on Israelis, for Palestinians in the West Bank have lived for some time now in despair of their future and the future of their children, seeing no end to Israel’s occupation. In contrast, many Israelis have believed that denying millions of Palestinians in the West Bank their right to self-determination and statehood is a “sustainable” state of affairs. This illusion has been shattered by the assault on the Jerusalem synagogue. Israelis are now experiencing some of the insecurity and hopelessness so deeply felt by Palestinians in the Occupied Territories, and also by Israel’s Arabs, particularly the ones in East Jerusalem.

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