Friday, October 22, 2010

The Hinge Of Peace

From Roger Cohen, a startlingly blunt and concise summary of the stakes and remaining chances in the stalled talks between Israel and the Palestinians. While he faults the Obama administration for its haste and naivete, he predicts direct talks will resume soon. While he believes that disappointing Palestinian expectations of a state within year could lead to more violence, he doubts both sides will muster the courage to bring it about. The key paragraph:
Netanyahu stands at Israel’s new political center, which is to the right of where it was five years ago. An iron-clad Israeli narrative exists: We removed settlements from Gaza and look what we got — Hamas rockets! That’s the prism through which withdrawal from the West Bank is viewed. You can dispute the narrative but it’s there. So Palestinians must deal with it. Their thirst for sovereignty is matched only in intensity by Israel’s insistence on security. Here lies the hinge of peace.

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