French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius is launching a new effort to resurrect the “peace” process” that nobody seems to want, except for Western leaders who see the world from hotel rooms and airplanes.
He is traveling to the Middle East, where he plans to meet with Arab League ministers on Saturday and then with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday.
What new angle could Fabius possibly have in mind to succeed after failures of U.S. Secretaries of State James Baker, Lawrence Eagleburger, Warren Christopher, Madeleine Albright, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Hillary Rodham Clinton, John Kerry and special envoy George Mitchell, and who else?
The common denominator in the above names is that they all are Americans, and Fabius figures that is the problem. A senior French diplomat told Reuters:
The method to reach a definitive solution has been for both sides to meet face to face with the Americans as an honest broker, but this method has failed. It needs international support.
It is not as if the United States failed alone, the Quartet – consisting the U.S., Russia, the United Nations and the European Union – also escorted the Palestinian Authority to the grave pit that all of them dug for the peace process.
Fabius is building his illusion on the fallacy that, according to the same diplomat, “We can no longer isolate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the regional context.”
Once upon a time, the failure of an agreement between the Palestinian Authority and Israel was the supposed root cause of unrest in the Arab world.
Then the disagreement became the reason that no one, except perhaps Israel, could stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
Now the fall guy is the Islamic State (ISIS). The diplomat said the current “inertia” is “deadly” because if there is not agreement, the ISIS will adopt the Palestinian Authority cause.
Abbas already has rejected the French proposal for a resolution in the U.N. Security Council to give both sides 18 months to agree, meaning Israel must agree to Abbas’ terms. Abbas; problem is that the French resolution would recognize Israel as a “Jewish” state, and he cannot stomach that.
Fabius, like Kerry, doesn’t take “no” for an answer, at least not for 18 months.
The French Foreign Minister forgets it is “He,” and not “he,” who has the whole in His hands.