As President Obama prepares to meet in Washington next week with the Palestinian Authority president, Mahmoud Abbas, Israeli opponents of a peace deal keep asserting that four issues pose insurmountable stumbling blocks: Palestinian recognition of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, the “right of return,” Jerusalem and security arrangements.
But these naysayers are mistaken. Concurrence on all four issues can be reached if both sides are sincerely committed to a two-state solution, and if both leaderships and the mediator have the courage to tell the truth to one another, to themselves and — most important — to their constituencies.… Seguir leyendo »
Today, as American, European, Russian and United Nations officials meet in Washington to discuss the future of the Middle East peace process, Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, remains adamant that a peace deal premised on returning to Israel’s pre-1967 borders poses an unacceptable risk to its security.
He is right: the country’s 1967 borders are not militarily defensible. But his use of this argument to reject the only viable formula for Israeli-Palestinian peace — a negotiated two-state solution based on mutually agreed upon land swaps — is wrong, and it does not serve Israel’s security interests.
Israel needs peace with the Palestinians, and that will likely require a return to the 1967 lines with a few adjustments.… Seguir leyendo »
The difficulties surrounding preparations for the Obama-Netanyahu-Abbas meeting in New York last month should bring the U.S. administration to one conclusion: There is no sense in pressing for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks now. That is not because there is no urgent need of a negotiated agreement — there certainly is. It is because the political constraints of both leaders, the Palestinian Authority’s Mahmoud Abbas and Israel’s Binyamin Netanyahu, prevent any progress at the negotiation table. Abbas, without substantial achievements, cannot explain to his people why he made substantial concessions to the Israelis. Netanyahu, given the political composition of his government, cannot provide Abbas with such achievements.… Seguir leyendo »