Monday, August 25, 2008

Olmert: Pushing For A Peace Deal In The Very Worst Way

It is one thing for the world to see Israel and the Palestinian Authority as children--or worse--who need to be pressured into a peace agreement.

It is another for an influential newspaper publisher in Israel to plead with a foreign official to 'rape' Israel.

The question is where does Olmert's current venture fit in:

PM Olmert pushing for deal with Palestinians to impose on Israel
Dr. Aaron Lerner Date: 22 August 2008

Maariv correspondent Ben Caspit reports in today's edition that Prime
Minister Ehud Olmert is pushing hard to reach a deal with PA head Mahmoud
Abbas before he leaves office. American businessman Daniel Abram recently
met with Abbas a number of times to encourage Abbas to reach an agreement
with Olmert.

According to Caspit, Olmert tells his circle that if he reaches a deal with Abbas "the president of the United States will adopt the wording, the world with adopt it, the European Union, also the Arab world. We can tell the Israeli People that this is what can be achieved after long years of negotiations and the Nation will decide."[emphasis mine]

According to Dr. Lerner, Olmert is set on railroading all of Israel into a treaty that they will be unable to avoid:

Olmert intends to create a situation according to which the Israeli public will be put in the situation that rejection of the deal means rejection of a plan already embraced by the entire world - with all the consequences.

It is not completely clear that Olmert is looking at this as a fait acompli, so much as the establishment of the groundwork that will facilitate a treaty. In other words--Olmert is not evil, merely naieve.

If the rest of the world accepts the concept, but the Arab world does not--what is to keep the West from using the wording to force Israel to make concessions in the face of continued Arab intransgience?

Even if the Arab world says it agrees, how is Israel to be sure that this is not lip service of the type we have seen in the past--where public statements in English are contradicted by statements made in Arabic to the general population.

Finally, Olmert seems to forget that he was not elected Prime Minister, his approval rating is in the single digits and he has no mandate. As a lame duck of the worse sort, by what right does he enter into the most complicated kind of diplomacy with limited time and without the trust of the people?

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