Netanyahu Wants Peace?

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave a speech today (Sunday) in which he declared that he wanted the Israelis and Palestinians to live in peace in a two-state arrangement.  All the Palestinians have to do is give up everything.  They cannot have an army, nor can they control their own airspace.  Also, they have to give up any hope of the refugess from the creation of Israel ever returning and they have to accept that Jerusalem will not be divided into a Jewish half and a Muslim half.  Oh yeah, they also have to recognize Israel as the state of the Jewish people.

So if the Palestinians give up everything they want, then they can live in peace with the Israelis.  And what does Israel have to give up?  Well, they are not giving up Jerusalem, they are not giving up any room for refugees, and they are not giving back any land that was taken by settlers.  Yes, that’s right, they are not agreeing to stop settlement growth, much less dismantling the settlements that are already in place.  So it seems that the Palestinians need to give up everything and the Israelis don’t have anything to offer except platitudes of peace.  Wow, that sounds like a great deal.  I wonder when Mahmoud Abbas will sign on the dotted line?

Let’s get real.  This is not a call for peace, but a call for surrender.  Netanyahu is telling the Palestinians that they should just bow their heads and kiss the feet of their masters.  It is absolutely ridiculous to call this anything but the sham it is.

And our fearless leader has called this “an important step forward.”  Really?  Is that what you think?  Or is that just for public consumption?  I had hoped that Obama would really lead on this issue.  When he made the speech in Cairo and said that Israel must stop the settlements, I thought that we might actually be able to make some headway.  Maybe my hopes were too high, but I thought that Obama would be able to move both parties toward a solution.  It is probably too early to tell but when he calls Netanyahu’s speech “an important step forward,” I think he needs to step outside and smell the bullshit.  Of course, I know that Obama is a smart guy and he may just be saying this so as to not upset the apple cart too much.  But there are two sides to this conflict and the Palestinians surely know that Netanyahu’s speech was not really a call for peace.

Maybe George Mitchell can save the day.  I’m not holding my breath though.


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