The announcement of upcoming “proximity talks” between Israel and the Palestinians raises a number of questions – what exactly will they talk about? What else can be renewed in the peace process, where everything seems to have been tried while peace remains elusive? What trick does George Mitchell, the mediator of the hour, have up his sleeve that was kept from his frustrated predecessors?
Israel wants to extract itself from the morass of control over the Palestinians, who accuse it of apartheid and force it to choose between its Jewish identity and its democracy. But Israel also wants to keep most of the West Bank, the settlements and security control, and to enjoy exclusive rights over Jerusalem.