“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Thoughts On The Middle East.

with 3 comments

Blake Hounshell looks at events in the Middle East in a critical way, and I think he’s correct, that Netanyahu will do nothing. Any halfway competent statesman would realise this is an opportunity to grasp, but not Netanyahu. The only quality he has an abundance is mediocrity, which will doom Israelis and Palestinians to more misery:

“Even more awkward for the United States, Netanyahu is due to visit Washington in a few days in what will likely be one long exposition of the words, “I told you so.” If he is smart, he will announce a serious plan for peace and get out ahead of the most serious threat to Israel’s security since the 1973 war. If he is true to form, he will use the opportunity to double down on his argument for the status quo.

President Obama has planned two speeches for the coming week: one for Thursday, billed as a disquisition on the Arab Spring, and another an address at the AIPAC conference. With George Mitchell’s resignation, the peace process is officially dead. The Arab street now understands its power — people clearly aren’t going to sit around quietly waiting until September for the U.N. General Assembly to pass a resolution recognizing a Palestinian state. The BDS movement (“boycott, divestment, sanctions”) is gaining steam internationally. There will be more marches, more flotillas, more escalation, more senseless deaths.

3 Responses

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  1. Not sure what the peace process that Netanyahu must present could consist of if Palestinians

    1. Insist on the right of return.
    2. Insist on dividing Jerusalem.
    3. Are united with Hamas.
    4. Insist that to even sit down and negotiate, Israel must stop building in Jewish towns already populated.
    5. The new PA will not recognize previous accords.
    6. They don’t recognize Israel is the state of the Jewish people.

    Maybe Netanyahu must give in totally or partially to them without receivin anything in exchange, and then start absorbing suicide bombings and missiles from Judea and Samaria?

    Fabian ben Israel

    18/05/2011 at 09:01

  2. With Egypt in flux and Syria in turmoil, what on earth is Netanyahu supposed to do right now?


    18/05/2011 at 12:53

  3. Fabian,

    Logically speaking, there has to be a negotiated final settlement or there doesn’t?

    I think it is key to have political resolution, and now is the chance.

    To leave it any longer would be a greater risk (and as a historian you will appreciate we will probably get the chance to see).

    I don’t see that Netanyahu is up to the job.

    If you could list his achievements in the domestic and international field I would appreciate it.

    And yes, everyone, but everyone will have to compromise, or it goes on and on and on and on and on.

    It’s peace now or potentially war with neighbouring states in the future, several, all at once….

    so I think grasping the nettle is a good idea, but it takes a statesman and not a mediocre politician like Netanyahu do that.


    18/05/2011 at 14:05

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