Howard Dicus: In 1994, NATO faltered. Civil strikes stopped in northern Ireland, and an American invasion was welcomed. In a year so out of quilter why not start with bagpipes.
This was the welcome President Clinton got when he flew to Jordan to watch King Hussein sign a peace treaty with Israel.
Announcer: There were recitations from the Qur’an and from the Torah, as King Hussein and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin met on the borders of their country to sign the treaty giving them peace for the first time in a generation.
King Hussein: "When we come to live next to each other, we will be doing so, Israelis and Jordanians together."
Yitzhak Rabin: "We both must draw on the springs of our great spiritual resources to forgive the anguish we caused to each other."
Bill Clinton: "Your Majesty, Mr. Prime Minister, here in the Great Rift Valley you have bridged the tragic rift that separated your people for too long."
Announcer: The peace treaty between Israel and Jordan was made possible by Israel’s agreement to turn Jericho and Gaza over to Palestinians. In 1994 Yasser Arafat went from being a guerilla leader to being more or less a Head of State in Gaza. UPI’s John Ferziger.
John Ferziger: "The PLO leader stayed up most of the night holding a 1:00 a.m. news conference and munching with comrades on a dinner of watermelon and cheese."
Announcer: But as the year ended Arafat’s police had big trouble from radicals who thought he had sold out. A problem predicted by President Clinton the day of the Jordanian treaty signing.
Bill Clinton: "The forces of terror will try to hold you back. Already they take deadly aim at the future of peace and their zeal to kill hope and keep hatred alive."
Announcer: The year ended with peace in the Middle-East but it was also the year that saw Jewish settler Baruch Goldstein use an assault weapon to open fire on Muslim worshipers, as they knelt in prayer at a historic West Bank mosque; 40 dead, 150 wounded before onlookers beat Goldstein to death.
Peace came to northern Ireland in 1994 when a ceasefire held for days, then weeks, then months. All side seemed surprised.
© 1994 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved.