Kerry Holding European Boycott Over Israel
Secretary of State John Kerry has been coordinating with the European Union regarding its boycott of Israeli settlements, a senior Palestinian negotiator reconfirmed to KleinOnline.
In August, that same Palestinian negotiator said the Obama administration is working behind the scenes, tying the potential of a future European Union boycott of Israeli settlements to the Jewish state’s actions during U.S.-brokered talks with the Palestinians.
Kerry is facing heavy criticism from Israeli leaders in response to comments he made that some say are supportive of the European boycott.
Speaking at a security conference in Munich, Kerry seemed to warn that if negotiations to create a Palestinian state fail, Israel could face growing international boycotts.
“You see for Israel there is an increasing deligitimization campaign that has been building up. People are very sensitive to it,” said Kerry. “There are talk of boycotts and other kinds of things. Are we all going to be better with all of that?”
“The risks are very high for Israel,” Kerry continued. “People are talking about boycott. That will intensify in the case of failure.
“Do they want a failure that then begs whatever may come in the form of a response from disappointed Palestinians and the Arab community?”
Israeli leaders took issue with Kerry’s statements and his failure to condemn what many see as an anti-Semitic boycott.
In response, the State Department issued a statement explaining that Kerry’s remarks were taken out of context, clarifying that Kerry opposes boycotts against Israel.
However, the senior negotiator reiterated comments he made to KleinOnline in August in which he said he was told that the Obama administration has been coordinating the boycott threat with the EU as leverage to ensure Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu goes along with the talks.
“They agreed to a ‘good cop, bad cop’ attitude,” said the negotiator of the U.S.-EU relationship regarding the boycott.
Last August, the same senior Palestinian negotiator said that the EU guidelines were published in full coordination with Kerry.
The negotiator further claimed that if Israel does not collaborate with Palestinian talks being brokered by Kerry, the EU financial sanctions could become tougher. The threat has been communicated to Israeli officials, according to the Palestinian negotiator.
Possible further boycotts being considered, the negotiator stated, include an official statement from EU that settlements are illegal; a full financial boycott; and sanctions on all trade, universities and Jewish entities in the settlements.
Another possibility is an EU dictate requiring special visas for settlers.
On the other hand, if Israel goes along with Kerry’s peace plan, the EU will reconsider its future settlement boycott, the Palestinian negotiator stated.
Will Obama Visit Iran?
During a radio interview on Sunday, former UN ambassador John Bolton said he wouldn’t be surprised if President Obama visited Iran on a peace mission.
“I’ve heard rumors to that effect. And it wouldn’t surprise me,” Bolton said on “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio on New York’s WABC Radio.
Continued Bolton: “You know, the chief negotiator with Iran [Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs] Wendy Sherman was also the Clinton administration’s chief negotiator with North Korea at the end of the Clinton administration.
“And it was very clear after Secretary of State Albright’s visit to Pyongyang that they hoped that they could get Clinton to North Korea before the end of his term. So it wouldn’t surprise me and it’s a reflection of the approach of the Obama administration overall.
“I have called this Geneva agreement with Iran if not the equivalent of Munich in 1938, certainly right up there in second place.”