בשנת 2000, אחרי כישלון וועידת קמפ דייוויד מיהרו בעלי המו"מ לטאבא על מנת להציל את שיחות השלום. כוונת הפלסטינים הייתה אחרת—הם רצו למחוק את הכרזת הנשיא קלינטון כי הפלסטינים אשמים בכישלון השיחות, והישראלים הפתאים נפלו בפח. אחרי השיחות בטאבא, שחוץ מהסכמת ישראל להכניס 100 אלף פליטים לתוך ישראל, לא העלו דבר – כינסו הצדדים מסיבת עיתונאים ובה הכריזו "שכמעט" הגיעו להסכם. הפלסטינים השיגו את מבוקשם- נמחקה מהם אשמת הכישלון ונחלקה שווה בשווה עם הישראלים, והישראלים השיגו מטרה אחרת- המשך מנגנון "עשיית השלום" שבא לידי ביטוי אחר כך ב"יוזמת ז'נבה".
מי שקילקל את החגיגה היה מוחמד דחלאן, מראשי פתח, שכאשר שמע את על ה"כמעט" הסכם, קרא מתוך הקהל: "חרטא ברטא"- כלומר: קשקוש מקושקש.
למעשה, אנו נמצאים באותה סיטואציה- הפלסטינים דחו את יוזמת קרי, אבל הוא איננו רוצה להכריז עליהם כאשמים- הוא ממשיך את המהלך עד שתימצא התואנה להכריז על ישראל כאשמה או "שני הצדדים".
איפה אתה מוחמד דחלאן כשצריך אותך?

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Palestinian-Israeli resumption of talks. Really?

In the end if his last round USA secretary of state, John Kerry, announced the restart of direct negotiations between the PLO and Israel that will take place in Washington. However, so far no invitation was sent to the parties and it was announced in both sides that they do not expect an invitation to be received imminently and both sides expect a delay to a week after next week.
After evaluating what really happened during Kerry's latest shuttle we doubt whether anything substantial really happened and Kerry was driven to kind of Fatah-Hamas reconciliation talks whereas the parties "almost" achieved breakthroughs after each round but practically speaking- nothing happened.
What happened? Kerry inaugurated latest round in two meetings with PLO leader Abu Mazen in Amman. The second meeting was very harsh and Kerry threatened Abu Mazen in cutting USA aid in case of rejecting the call to resume negotiations. Furthermore, he asked Arab foreign ministers that convened in Amman to lodge similar threats. Abu Mazen returned to Ramallah with the impression that the future of the Palestinian Authority is at stake and conveyed this impression to his fellow Fatah and PLO leaders when back in Ramallah. Yesterday, former Prime Minister Ahmad Qrei, Abu Ala, wrote an article in which he suggested to prepare to worst case scenario when the Palestinian Authority will collapse. http://www.alquds.co.uk/?p=65153
However, Fatah and PLO top echelons were not impressed and expressed fierce rejection to waiving the pre-conditions for resuming negotiations: freezing all settlement activity, releasing of all 120 pre-Oslo prisoners and Israeli recognition in 1967 borders. What is worse—they wrote a paper without the participation of Abu Mazen and dictated it on him. When Kerry understood from Sa'eb Areiqat that the paper bypassed Abu Mazen – he decided to go the Ramallah in order to have the continuation of the talks not out of Fatah rebellious letter but based on the face-to face meeting with Abu Mazen. The choice that Kerry faced was either to give up at that point and declare the Palestinian side as the party to blame or to create an impression of success- and he chose the latter option. The result was that the PLO called Kerry's bluff that he never meant to declare the Palestinians as the party to blame and punish them. The lesson for the Israeli side is that in case Kerry's efforts end in failure both sides will be blamed or the Israelis alone—never the Palestinians alone.
When Fatah Central Committee convened to approve sending Saeb Areiqat to meet the Israelis in Washington- his mission was very strictly defined—only for getting a written USA commitment to start the negotiations on 1967 borders. This latest Fatah demand is what is stalling the inauguration of the direct negotiations. However, the USA cannot declare failure in this early stage that put the Palestinians as blamed party which contradicts Obama's outreach to Islam, but Abu Ala's latest article indicates that the Palestinians begin to consider the option of dismantling the Palestinian Authority.
In a wider overlook one cannot be impressed of the futility of the western foreign policy in Middle East and its reluctance to study from mistakes. After destroying Libya and Egypt as a result of emotional bombastic rhetoric the EU and the USA look like getting determine to destroy Israel and the Palestinian Authority as well. EU boycott policy looks like as directed against the settlements only but the anti-Israel NGOs in Europe are already deployed to boycott all Israeli products to Europe. As for the Palestinian Authority maybe Kerry caused the Arabs now to stop aiding the Palestinians and again like what happened in Egypt and Libya pathetic emotional western policy will destroy what is left standing- Israel and PA and Jordan next.

Sum up: it is early to evaluate what caused Kerry to invest these big efforts to revive peace negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel. Despite his announcement that a breakthrough was accomplished- we cannot see in barren eyes any real breakthrough. As a result the stability of both Israel and the PA is shaken. Kerry opened the door to Gulf countries to stop financing the Palestinian Authority and the EU is launching a boycott campaign on Israel that begins in settlement but will engulf the entire Israeli economy. For Israel it may mean the end of Oslo process because they discovered the deep PLO involvement in pushing the EU to this hostile direction.