by Barry Rubin
In 1994, Israel asserted, and the PLO accepted, that construction would continue on existing Jewish settlements. For the next 15 years, negotiations were never stopped by that building.
In January 2009, the Palestinian Authority (PA) stopped negotiations because Hamas attacked
Then came President Barack Obama who demanded a stop to all construction on settlements in 2009.
But the PA refused to return to negotiations. Why, because the construction offended it? No, because the PA’s radical forces don’t want to make a peace deal because they believe they can win total victory and destroy
In September 2009, Obama announced that within two months there would be full and final peace negotiations in
No Western media outlet said that the PA refusal to negotiate for—as of today—about 15 months shows that the PA doesn’t want peace. Yet they had no hesitation about saying that Israel doesn’t want peace (or at least maybe doesn’t) because Israel announced the building of apartments on the basis of a policy it has followed for 16 years, without serious complaint for most of that time.
Abbas seized on the opportunity to declare that he wasn’t going to negotiate. Is he indignant? Upset? Does he feel betrayed? No, he’s delighted to have an excuse to do what he wants to do anyway: Not negotiate with
Just like the famous scene in the film
Rick: How can you close me down? On what grounds?
Renault: “I am shocked shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!”
The croupier comes out of the gambling room and up to Renault. He hands him a roll of bills. Croupier: “Your winnings, sir.”
Renault: “Oh thank you very much. [He turns to the crowd] Everybody out at once!”
And so he gets to close down talks, keep his winnings, and blame it on
Just as Obama killed the chance for negotiations with his demand for a full freeze, he and Vice-President Joe Biden may have done so again for indirect talks. But isn’t it
Even those in the West who mistrust or hate
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal.
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