Just before leaving office, former President Bill Clinton attempted to broker a peace agreement which witnessed Israel agree to give Palestinians a separate nation, about 94% of the West Bank and its capital in east Jerusalem, but Yasser Arafet preferred to play the demagogue game of demanding everything. His reaction was to launch the intifada which disintegrated into violence and incoherence. For the first time in over three decades, Israel has an Arab leader who wants to attain peace through peaceful means. Instead of violence, he is calling for a unilateral of statehood, an appeal to the United Nations for recognition of his new government and demanding Israel citizenship for Palestinians. One may not agree with his demands but nothing in them suggests any call for violence toward Israel. Unlike the Clinton administration, President Obama is allowing this opportunity to slip away due to his passivity and refusal to support ideas he was championing a few months ago.
Many Israelis are angry because Abbas will not return to the negotiating table. But, why should he? On one hand, Prime Minister Netanyahu argues against “preconditions,” but on the other hand he insists discussion about east Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian nation or return of refugees can not be discussed. Huh? Mr. Netanyahu are you for or against preconditions?