Will the U.S., the UN and the Palestinians Renege on Prior Agreements?

(Washington Post) Jennifer Rubin - Dore Gold, former Israeli ambassador to the UN and adviser to multiple prime ministers, debunked the mantra that at Camp David "we were never so close to peace" (or its other incarnation - "everyone knows what the final deal will be"). A cottage industry of peace processors seemed determined to propagate the idea that if only Bill Clinton had hung in there a few more weeks, we'd have had peace. This is false. Gold said that at a December 2000 cabinet meeting under Ehud Barak, the chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces said the deal would be "a threat to the vital interests of Israel." Moreover, the Palestinians never gave up the right of return or agreed to the cessation of war against Israel. He said the real issue is whether the U.S. and its Quartet partners will live up to the commitments made in UN Resolution 242 and by presidents of both parties to ensure that Israel has defensible borders. The April 14, 2004, letter from President George W. Bush to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, made as part of the U.S. inducement for the Gaza disengagement plan, said: "In light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli populations centers, it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949." This arrangement was endorsed in the House by 407-9 and in the Senate by 95-3, including Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.). Gold explained that Abbas wants recognition of a Palestinian state without recognition of Israel, without giving up the right of return and without ending the conflict. He emphasized that to ask Israel now to make unilateral moves, when it does not know the identity of its neighbors, is "simply not serious."

2011-04-06 00:00:00

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