Thursday, December 19, 2013

Palestinian Israeli Peace?

By Micah Halpern
I've Been Thinking:

Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said yesterday that talks with Israel may extend beyond the nine month April deadline if real progress and a "detailed skeleton" of all the elements in question is in place.

Erekat wants the skeleton to include frameworks for borders, land swaps, security coordination and refugees.

This comment indicates that there may be more room for optimism than the impression given by initial assessments. Thomas Friedman, in a recent OPED in The New York Times, seems to sense the optimism.

Friedman raked the Palestinians over the coals saying they cannot have it all and that they must be more realistic about their desires for statehood. He made a very cogent argument for compromise.

Friedman criticized Israel for wanting too much and said that Israel must give up one of their three essential loves - democracy, the Jewishness of the state, the totality of the land of Israel. He suggests the third option, giving up settlements in the West Bank.

There is still very little chance of success. That having been said, low expectations are a great tool through which to achieve change. 

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