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Secretary of State John Kerry’s recent embrace of the Arab Peace Initiative is, to say the least, unnerving. Certainly the response of Arab leaders to his action reflects the dangers for Israel inherent in the plan. President Obama seems to be preoccupied these days with Syria and Iran as well as serious domestic issues and is largely leaving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to Mr. Kerry. But the secretary of state seems poised to roil things up without any prospect of real progress.
John Kerry and Tzipi Livni have something in common. Both of them want to advance their political careers with the booby prize of an Israeli-Palestinian Authority peace agreement.
It does not really matter who is in power in Israel: no Palestinian leader has a mandate to make any concessions to Israel, let alone sign a peace treaty.
Top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat says Arab nations will pay the Palestinian Authority $100 million a month if Israel stops monthly tax payments to the group in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza.
A solution in which the Syrian people are empowered to operate more freely in a true multi-party government, under the aegis of multinational protection against both Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood, would be the most desirable, achievable outcome. It is not possible to broker this outcome while ignoring Russia.
The only way to secure a positive outcome in Syria is to use US power, under US strategic direction, to do it. This has never necessarily meant military intervention, but it does necessarily mean acting with purpose and determination, rather than throwing random reconnaissance assets into the fray while handing the political problem over lock, stock, and barrel to the Arab League and the UN.
Resolution will be similar to earlier Security Council resolution vetoed by Russia and China, but will be submitted to the General Assembly
Lavrov: "The president of Syria assured us he was completely committed to the task of stopping violence regardless of where it may come from."
The Arab League suspended its observer mission Sunday after government violence this weekend resulted in the deaths of approximately 200 civilians.
Reports estimate that the death toll in the weekend government crackdown has exceeded 210.
The Arab League decision comes in the wake of the uptick in government violence over the weekend.
Syrian authorities have ignored the mission's requests to take steps such as removing weapons and military personnel from mosques in cities where protests have taken place, and the casualty rate in the army’s response to the protests has actually increased since the monitors began their work three weeks ago.