Are the Fundamental Assumptions of Oslo Still Valid?

[INSS-Tel Aviv University] Zaki Shalom - The rejection of former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's far-reaching offer to Mahmoud Abbas, as well as previous offers by former Prime Minister Ehud Barak at Camp David (July 2000) and the Clinton parameters, cast a heavy shadow of doubt over fundamental assumptions underlying the Oslo process. The rejection of the Barak and Olmert offers reflects what much of Israeli public opinion has long felt, namely, at critical moments the Palestinians find it difficult to make a decision in favor of a pragmatic compromise. This contrasts sharply with the model of the Zionist movement which, in its desire to obtain any territory whatsoever for the persecuted Jewish people, was willing to accept almost any diplomatic plan, provided only that a sovereign Jewish state would be established in its framework. The Palestinian leadership has demonstrated a radically different approach and seemingly operates on the principle of all or nothing. This questions the sincerity of the drive to establish an independent Palestinian state as a concrete political plan. The writer is a Principal Research Fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies.

2009-08-10 06:00:00

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