web analytics
December 21, 2014 / 29 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Monitor »

Krauthammer’s Crystal Ball


Media-Monitor-logo

Going through some old issues of The Weekly Standard magazine on a recent rainy day, the Monitor was struck by a November 9, 1998 cover story from the acclaimed columnist Charles Krauthammer that fairly shouted Crystal Ball.

Krauthammer began the piece, titled “The Coming Palestinian State,” with a defense of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s performance at the Wye River summit (this was, of course, Netanyahu’s first go-round in the prime minister’s chair), a performance that had been derided by critics on both the left and the right.

Netanyahu, Krauthammer pointed out, had by the time of his election in 1996 come to accept Oslo as a fait accompli; had in fact campaigned not on a platform of abrogating the treaty but of insisting on Palestinian compliance and reciprocity.

“The point,” argued Krauthammer, “is that Netanyahu never was a zealot. He has long believed that a solution to the Palestinian question would require some territorial compromise. He was never a ‘Land of Israel’ ideologue. He would, of course, have preferred to hold on to every inch for security reasons. But he understands realities.”

Netanyahu’s primary goals were to halt the one-sided nature of the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority and to somehow safely steer the country through – if not completely around – the interim territorial withdrawals agreed to by the previous Israeli government.

Yasir Arafat, encouraged by former prime minister Shimon Peres, had been under the impression that even before the start of the “final status” negotiations Israel would hand over approximately a third of the disputed land in each of three redeployments – in effect leaving Israel with no bargaining chips just as the key issues of East Jerusalem and Palestinian statehood were placed on the table.

“Netanyahu’s entire strategy for the last two years,” Krauthammer wrote, “undertaken at huge diplomatic and personal political cost, has been to reduce Arafat’s expectations…. On this he won. Wye ratifies the victory. Arafat had 27 percent of the territories when Netanyahu came to power. Wye gives him 13 percent more. Oslo’s interim phase will end with Israel having given up 40 percent of the land.

“From the Israeli point of view, this is an extraordinary achievement. It leaves Israel with a serious chunk of territory on the West Bank to bargain with.”

It is when he turned his attention to what Arafat received at Wye that Krauthammer’s tone took a dark turn. That additional 13 percent of land promised to Arafat, he noted, was crucial not so much for its size as for the isolated pockets of Palestinian-controlled territory that would now be linked. And with Gaza and the West Bank connected by two special roads, the land under Arafat’s jurisdiction suddenly appeared more than ever like a real state.

And the biggest prize of all, he added, was that President Clinton would shortly travel to Gaza to formally address a large conclave of Palestinians – a visit ostensibly tied to an understanding that Arafat would convene the Palestine National Council for the purpose of excising the anti-Israel clauses in the PNC charter, though it was always unclear how serious the Palestinians were about the undertaking.

What was clear, wrote Krauthammer, “is that an American president will come to Palestine to bless its Congress, address a Palestinian festival celebrating coming independence, and launch it on that road.”

A road, it should be said, that Clinton fully supported. Krauthammer made the point, downplayed or ignored by Jews who loved to contrast Clinton so favorably with the first President Bush, that at the 1991 Madrid peace talks the Bush administration “explicitly declared that it would not support a Palestinian state.”

No such declarations were ever heard from Clinton.

In the end, Krauthammer feared, Wye would be seen to have set the groundwork for the creation of a Palestinian state and the outbreak of war. It was only a matter of time before one side or the other would be forced, most likely by cataclysmic events, to surrender its chief claims.

“That,” he concluded, “is the crisis waiting to happen. For now, Wye is the bridge to that crisis, the last agreement between Israel and the Palestinians we are likely to see before the fateful showdown.”

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Krauthammer’s Crystal Ball”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Dr. Ben Carson at the Western Wall.
Black GOP Leader Prays at the Western Wall for ‘Solomonic Wisdom’
Latest Indepth Stories
President Shimon Peres receives the Congrssional Gold Medal.

“Mr. Prime Minister, declare a unilateral ceasefire! Remember, Blessed is the peacemaker!”

KidSport-Everybody-Is-A-Winner1

“D-e-t-e-r-m-i-n-a-t-i-o-n!”

This masked "soldier" carrying a machine-gun is not part of a terrorist organization, according to the European Court of Justice.

Hamas is continuing to prepare its next war against Israel instead of improving conditions in Gaza

UN Flags

If the UN Grants national recognition to Palestine, why stop there? Tibet, Chechnya, Basque…

The decision to not publicly light the Menorah in Sydney, epitomizes the eternal dilemma of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.

Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof

What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.

Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.

The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.

Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US

No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?

For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.

It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.

For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.

More Articles from Jason Maoz
Comptroller DiNapoli celebrates Sukkot with Crown Heights Jewish community leaders at the sukkah of Rabbi Chanina Sperlin of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council.

The New York State comptroller manages the state’s $180.7 billion pension fund, audits the spending practices of all state agencies and local governments, oversees the New York State and Local Retirement System, reviews the New York State and City budgets, and approves billions in State contracts and spending.

Front-Page-102414

While not all criticism of Israel stemmed from anti-Semitism, Podhoretz contends the level of animosity towards Israel rises exponentially the farther left one moved along the spectrum.

When you grow up in a home where your parents went through what my parents went through, you realize that life has to be meaningful. You have to be there for other people.

“It’s a lousy column and a dishonest one,” Halberstam wrote. “So close it. Or you will end up just as shabby as Safire.”

Wye would be seen to have set the groundwork for the creation of a Palestinian state

These are not necessarily the best all-around biographies or studies of the individual presidents listed (though some rank right up there), but the strongest in terms of exploring presidential attitudes and policies toward Israel.

The Clintonan “engagement” liberals remember with such fondness did nothing but embolden Arafat and Hamas and Hizbullah as they witnessed Israel’s only real ally elevate process ahead of policy.

What really makes one wonder about the affinity felt by certain Jews for Grant was the welcome mat he put out for some of the country’s most pernicious anti-Semites.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/krauthammers-crystal-ball/2010/01/27/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: