To hell in a handbasket

By Ted Belman

Rice is going home empty-handed with egg on her face. Guess who she will blame.

Debka reports that Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad are incapable of solidifying their grip on power or combating Palestinian terror, as required by the Middle East road map.

The US Secretary also discovered that, notwithstanding his denials, Abbas is conducting secret indirect contacts with Hamas. Whatever the outcome of the Annapolis conference, if it goes ahead, he is determined to lead his Fatah party into negotiations with Hamas for a united national government and reconstruct the Gaza-West Bank link which was severed in June when Hamas drove the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority out of the Gaza Strip.

After the coup in Gaza, I speculated that the US ordered Fatah to take a dive to enable a separation to take place between Hamas and Fatah. Thus it would enable Fatah to continue the “peace process” that Hamas was preventing.

Thus when Abbas is proceeding to reconcile with Hamas, it is the clearest sign that the US strategy of separation is dead. Thus the end of the “peace process” as we know it.

What I predict will happen now is a new process whereby Hamas is brought back into the fold. Saudi Arabia has always wanted this. Thus the only agreement possible will be a hudna and it will be called a peace agreement.

Israel should resist such a end result but it won’t.

October 17, 2007 | 3 Comments »

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3 Comments / 3 Comments

  1. iT’S SIMPLE ABBAS FINnACED THE mUNICH TERROR! i HAVE NEGATIVE RESPECT FOR HIm! Why doesn’t the world? I would threathen them we HAVE NUCLEAR WEAPONS LETS USE THEM! That’s all they understand! I will not give up our holiest city and the temple!Hashem will decide!i am sick and tired of all the BULLSHIT!WE have suffered way to far over nonscence!

  2. No quarrel there. I think what you will find is that a new process will take place whereby Hamas and Saudi Arabia is on Board but the object is an agreement which is really a hudna. It will be hailed as peace. I have added this point to my post.

  3. Suggesting that the peace process is dead in light of Rice’s best efforts at shuttle diplomacy and pressure on Israel not bearing fruit, incorporates wishful thinking into the analysis.

    There have been a number of times the peace process has stalled, if not appeared dead, only to be later revived with some new circumstance promising that this next time things will be different.

    The West has not abandoned the current peace process paradigm in the least. At worst they might shelve it until the next new circumstance arises for them to take it off the shelf and try again.

    Separating Gazan Palestinians from West Bank Palestinians may have seemed to be the opening America needed to push forward with West Bank Palestinians under Abbas and Fatah to achieve the two state peace solution. The thinking probably was if a deal could be reached with Fatah as regards the West Bank to have that declared an independent Palestinian state, that Palestinians in Gaza would see the light as it were, reject Hamas and seek to be part of the new independent Palestinian state.

    According to a 2004 census, there are about 2.5 million Palestinians in the West Bank and 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza.

    Regardless of what Abbas may have promised as regards cutting out Hamas and Gazan Palestinians from the peace process for now and not making any deals with Hamas for a unity government, it just does not seem feasible for him to have ever seriously contemplated following through.

    To engage in peace discussions with a view to an independent West Bank Palestinian state and only on behalf of the 2.5 million Palestinians in the West Bank and ignoring the Gazan Palestinians, would create the impression Abbas does not want that he is only the leader of the West Bank Palestinians. The PA and predecessor organizations have always advocated on behalf of all Palestinians.

    While it seemed easier for America to support Abbas talking peace with Israelis only in respect of the West Bank and leave the issue of a peace involving Gaza for another day, the optics of just who Abbas was representing looked bad to Palestinians.

    It is therefore not surprising at all that Abbas has been engaged in discussions with Hamas to find some accomodation between them to allow him to speak on behalf of all the Palestinians.

    I do not think C. Rice is going to blame Israel for her failure or for the Annapolis peace conference not going forward and being delayed if that turns out to be the case. I do think it a given that she will spread the blame to both Israelis and Palestinians and unnamed dark forces (read Arab forces) that were not co-operating or demanding far too much. She will of course add that America has not abandoned the peace process and is working steadfastly to make that happen.

    It was President Bush who just last week stated that resolution of the Israel – Palestinian conflict and the creation of an independent Palestinian state was his administration’s top priority. With that said, America will not soon give up trying to manipulate the situation in one way or another so that the same two state solution peace process would again be revived.

    Bush may however not have to wait that long. There is an upcoming major peace conference, preliminary to the hoped for Annapolis peace conference that has apparently been arranged by Olmert to be held in Israel with 80 top leaders from Israel, America and the Palestinians. The purpose of this preliminary conference is to reach some form of a preliminary peace agreement that will set the stage for a broader and more specific agreement they hope to reach in Annapolis.

    What C. Rice has failed to achieve with her current round of shuttle peace diplomacy, Olmert just might achieve.

    If Olmert pulls this off, I wonder if Israelis will notice that in his doing so, he played the role of an American 5th column provocateur advancing America’s interests rather then fulfilling his role as leader of Israel charged with protecting, defending and advancing Israel’s very best interests.

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