Topics Barack Obama
Middle East negotiators can adjust Israel’s borders to include the large majority of West Bank settlers and still meet Palestinian Authority territorial demands. This proposition may guide leaders and diplomats in the coming months as they seek to advance the peace process.
The Middle East peace process has reached something of an impasse. Israel, with the US, has called for direct negotiations, without preconditions, but the Palestinians refuse to join us. Still, Israel remains committed to attaining a genuine peace grounded on the principle of two states for two peoples living side-by-side in security, prosperity and mutual acceptance.
Imagine a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict: a Jewish state living alongside a Palestinian state in permanent peace, with open borders, and even economic union. Sound like fantasy? It wasn’t when the U.N. General Assembly voted in favor of Resolution 181, dividing what was then known as Palestine into independent Jewish and Arab states.
This week, we witnessed President Obama’s shameful treatment of the leader of one of America’s closest allies. This became clear when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was hauled before a “seething” Obama and read the Riot Act behind closed doors.
Before the school year started I wrote that the expectation was that this would be a good year for Israel on campus. During the summer there were no indications of any problems and, in fact, the fall had little anti-Israel activity and a good deal of positive programming from pro-Israel students.
Late last month the Israeli Consulate in New York held a Twitter-based news conference, inviting anyone to ask questions of the Israeli government about the conflict in Gaza. While activity around the conference blossomed, President-elect Barack Obama’s Twitter account has had little to say since Election Day last year.
The war in Gaza has been at the center of the world’s attention for the past two weeks. The media have discussed the end of the six-month cease-fire between Hamas and Israel, the launching of rockets and mortars into southern Israel, and the subsequent Israeli retaliation, including ground operations in Gaza.