Photo Credit:
Louis Rene Beres

In the end, Israel’s existential choices are really all about logic.

In the language of formal logic, invalid forms of argument are called fallacies. The basic problem with Israel’s continuous search for “peace” through negotiated surrenders (land for nothing) has been its persistent commission of fallacies. Significantly, it is precisely such persistent commission that is now called for by Obama.

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Unlike simple instances of falsity, these arguments are insidious, because they could involve a devastating policy outcome. Distinguishable from singular mistakes, such deviations from correct thinking ensure that all subsequent calculations will also result in error. It is, therefore, in the very process of strategic thinking, and not in the assessment of particular facts and issues, that Israeli policy changes are now most sorely needed.

Let us continue to assume Obama means well in his “peace process” advice to Israel. But let Netanyahu also understand and acknowledge that the American president’s core assumptions about Palestinian willingness to renounce zero-sum thinking on Israel are wrong and unwise.

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Louis René Beres (Ph.D., Princeton, 1971) is Emeritus Professor of International Law at Purdue and the author of twelve books and several hundred articles on nuclear strategy and nuclear war. He was Chair of Project Daniel, which submitted its special report on Israel’s Strategic Future to former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, on January 16, 2003.