Thursday, September 22, 2011

Have Palestinians Recanted US Diplomatic Efforts On Statehood Declaration

After reports yesterday indicated that the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas would not call for a declaration of statehood and that he would agree to negotiations to begin within a month about final statehood discussions with Israel, Palestinian officials have backtracked and appear to be on a collision course with US and Western diplomatic efforts.

The spin about President Obama's (and America's) waning influence globally is not a rebuke of Obama's multilateral approach, but rather a result of the President pursuing a multilateral approach at a time when American leadership is needed. Yet, there are limits to leadership - and the Arab-Israeli conflict is one such area.

The Arab-Israeli conflict is one in which Israel lacks a partner in peace among Palestinians. This has been repeatedly demonstrated in recent weeks, but diplomats are trying their hardest to ignore reality and substitute their own to get a deal done that would avert a Palestinian call for statehood at the UN and a deal done to establish a 2-state solution in Israel and the territories.

It completely ignores that the Palestinians repeatedly indicate that a 2-state solution is not their ultimate goal; it's to completely eliminate Israel and a 2-state solution is a means to that end.

The failure of a peace process isn't on the President as Palestinian Authority critics would have it, it's on the Palestinians themselves - but the President failed to understand that injecting himself into that process was setting himself up for failure and blame regardless of his intentions.

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