However, this author’s four meetings this week with three of the region’s top Arab affairs experts and a senior Palestinian official reveal that the Palestinian’s have already jettisoned the idea of reaching a compromise with Israel and have already hit cruise control if only to collect on promises of eight billion dollars in international commitments.The phrase "one state solution" is a contradiction in terms.
I sat in a Tel Aviv meeting on Wednesday with a senior advisor to Mahmaoud Abbas who told a few of us Israelis in no uncertain terms. “PA leader Abbas’s hands are tied." He will not agree to anything less than a full Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines including Jerusalem. That means no Palestinian flexibility on their demands for full sovereignty over Jerusalem’s historic Old City and especially the holy Temple Mount. The Palestinian official added that the Palestinians are also not conceding their demand for the “right of return” of Palestinian refugees to Israel. The only flexibility is the possibility of a two percent land swap. Why such apparent intransigence already? Negotiations have barely started.
This apparent zero sum Palestinian game may explain why three of Israel’s leading experts and fellow colleagues on the Arab East told me flat out in separate meetings this week their assessment that the Palestinians have already given up on the two state solution. One of Israel’s best known Arab affairs analysts stated to me, “The Palestinian pursuit of a two state solution has ended.” They have condemned themselves to a fate worse than the 1948 “Nakba” (disaster). They are now committed to the one state solution: One state for Arabs and Jews. Moreover, the Palestinians are too tired for another terror Intifada in the near future.
Apparently the White House and State Department are out of the loop.
Just how far would the West be willing to back Abbas on such a play?
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