Progressive Zionist lobbyist MJ Rosenberg wonders why the Israelis think they can ignore the requests from Obama to move towards a two-state solution:
There can be no doubt: Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu does not much care what President Obama thinks about negotiations with the Palestinians. He seems to be making the same mistake that Obama’s opponents in the 2008 election made. He thinks Obama is a lightweight and that he can just roll him.
It’s pretty incredible considering that President Obama leads the nation that is Israel’s lifeline. The whole wiorld is lining up to cooperate with the new — and incedibly popular — President, but not the new Israeli government.
In fact, Rosenberg’s belief in Obama is almost child-like:
One of the reasons Obama is so eager to settle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is because he understands that doing so will help the United States address the Iran issue without going to war. And here the Israeli government takes the American approach and stands it on its head. Talk about sabotaging.
I guess Netanyahu is counting on pro-Israel organizations in America to line up behind him and not Obama. He is wrong. Someone needs to tell him that Barack Obama is more important than Avigdor Lieberman and the settler bloc. Maybe it should just be Obama.
I may be wrong, but Obama will have to do something that no US President has ever done before; truly pressure the Jewish state to abide by international law over settlements etc. I’ll believe it when I see it. The days of endlessly talking need to be over.
Gideon Levy writes in Haaretz a far more likely and depressing outcome:
Whether or not Netanyahu says two states, nothing will change. The Americans will rejoice, the Europeans will be thrilled, the Israeli right will wax wrathful, commentators will again write with pathos about how the dream of the greater land of Israel has been shelved – and the occupation will flourish.
The Jewish settlements in the territories will also continue to metastasize. After all, most Israelis, and at least two prime ministers and two leaders of the opposition, already said yes to the formula for peace long ago, and nothing has happened.
So who will stop this disaster?