Stop Twiddling and Act!

[tweetmeme] David Ignatius has a brilliant article in the Washington Post this morning.  He argues that there are certain concessions that must be made by both Palestinians and Israelis in order for peace to be made: sharing Jerusalem, a return to 1967 borders, land compensation for large Israeli blocks, and no right of return for Palestinians.  Ignatius says that negotiations should start there.  Ignatius sees the recent announcement of construction in East Jerusalem and the resulting row between the US and Israel as a act meant to show that Israel is not willing to concede Jerusalem.

Give it a read.  Here is a tidbit:

The East Jerusalem move wasn’t an accident but an emphatic public statement of the Israeli right’s rejection of concessions on Jerusalem. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had been trying to play along with U.S. requests to fuzz the issue by avoiding provocative actions on Jerusalem. But the right-wing Shas party, which controls the Interior Ministry, basically called his bluff.

“Freezing building in East Jerusalem is one of those things we cannot do,” said Dore Gold, a right-wing former Israeli ambassador to the United Nations. And Avigdor Lieberman, the Israeli foreign minister and a settler himself, responded: “Can you imagine if they told Jews in New York they could not build or buy in Queens?”

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4 thoughts on “Stop Twiddling and Act!

  1. Perhaps someone should inform Mr. Lieberman that Queens and New York are part of the same country. One might also inform him that in the U.S., developing housing for one ethnic or religious group is illegal and that countries institutionalizing apartheid do not share our values.

  2. “no right of return for Palestinians.” This is an inalienable right maintained by international law, It isn’t up to the PA to negotiate. No law of return or Alia on the other hand…

    1. Tarek,
      I agree. International law and common logic proves the legitimacy of the right of return. However, reality is often not logical and this is no exception. Israel will never agree to a peace deal that will allow the right of return – such an inflow of Palestinians into what is now Israel will completely skew Israeli demographics and threaten the ‘Jewishness’ of the state.

      I think most likely is an Israeli recognition of the right and a Palestinian agreement to give it up. I don’t know though. We’ll see.

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