The Palestinian leadership “wants a deal with Israel without any negotiations” and Israel’s leadership “wants negotiations with the Palestinians without any deal.”
The Israeli government has offered to stop settlement building in the West Bank for 10 months. But the Palestinian authority is not impressed and officials say that this is nothing new and unless it involves East Jerusalem it was unacceptable.The US said Israel’s decision would help “move forward” peace efforts. But Senior Palestinian MP Mustafa Barghouti says:
“What Netanyahu announced today is one of his biggest attempts at deception in his history.” This article by Anat Shalev argues that the gesture is aimed at the USA not the Palestinians.
So, a step in the right direction or yet another stalling point? A real offer or a form of deception? And unless the two sides sit together to reach a solution instead of learning to live with an ongoing problem what can a mediator (big and powerful as the USA is ) really do?Below is Mark’s original post discussing Thomas Friedman’s article about the Middle East peace process and whether both sides should be left to get on with it.
“Here’s an article from a few weeks ago in the New York Times by Thomas Friedman. There are many memorable phrases and anecdotes in the piece but the message to both sides in the conflict is :“When you’re serious, give us a call: 202-456-1414. Ask for Barack. Otherwise, stay out of our lives. We have our own country to fix.”
There are no talks underway at the moment, the so-called “road map” has long since been discarded”, so maybe what Mr Friedman is advocating is the best way forward.
This piece in the Jerusalem Post says he’s wrong…but demonstrates a division of opinion in the Israeli press.
While this piece….in the Global Arab Newtwork also calls for the U.S not to withdraw from the peace “process”, and takes issue with Mr Friedman’s assertion that :“if the status quo is this tolerable for the parties, then i say, let them enjoy it…i just don’t want to subsidise or anaesthetise it any more”Is there an argument that says the best way forward for the Middle East process to let them get on with it ?