Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told Europe Union foreign policy adviser Federica Mogherini last week that he wants to resume the “peace process” and talk with the Palestinian Authority on what settlements will remain in Israel, Haaretz reported Tuesday.
The Associated Press carried the report, in brief, around the world and quoted Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki as saying that Netanyahu is “trying to deceive the world with his meaningless talk.”
He is right.
It is meaningless talk because the Palestinian Authority has said time after time after time
the past three years that if it cannot get “all or nothing” through negotiations, it will go try its luck in the United Nations and in the International Criminal Court.
That is why Prime Minister Netanyahu had no trouble playing up to Mogherini’s illusions, but that the establishment media are reporting that the Prime Minister has made a 180-turn in is ready to talk about shrinking Israel.
The “news” is quote old because he has done so before, but the Palestinian Authority, backed by implied support from President Barack Obama, has insisted that the “negotiations” begin with an Israeli agreement up front that all of Judea and Samaria and large slices of Jerusalem will be within the borders of a future Palestinian Authority state.
PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas has agreed he might consider talking but only after Israel freezes all construction for Jews in the same areas, something which Israel did five years ago in a failed attempt by Obama to bring Abbas back to the negotiating table.
In a response to the Haaretz report this morning, an unnamed senior Israeli official placed a different light on Netanyahu’s suggestion to Mogherini. He pointed out that Netanyahu wants an understanding of which settlement blocs will remain in Israel so that Jews can continue to build there.
It is a non-starter because Abbas will not agree, but Haaretz framed the meeting with Mogherini in terms that implied it was a hush-hush discussion that will resurrect the peace process.
The newspaper, whose agenda is against a Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria, wrote:
The meeting was held in a very small forum. Aside from Netanyahu, the only Israeli officials present were National Security Adviser Joseph Cohen and the prime minister’s envoy for the peace process, attorney Isaac [Yitzchak] Molho….
Netanyahu is very concerned by preparations in Brussels to impose sanctions such as labeling settlement produce in EU supermarkets, as well as by the French push for a UN Security Council resolution that would lay down principles for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict…..
This is the first time since he took office in 2009 that Netanyahu has voiced willingness to discuss the size of the settlement blocs and their borders with the Palestinians. This is also the first time he has voiced willingness, albeit indirectly, to freeze construction outside the blocs.
The report also pointed out that Netanyahu is committed to “two states for two peoples” and added that it is a direct contradiction of his campaign promise that “there will be no Palestinian state under my watch.
As The JewishPress.com pointed out here Monday, both statements are true.
Netanyahu has no trouble with supporting the “two-state” principle but it is equally true it won’t happen while he is in office for the simple reason that Palestinian Authority won’t let it happen.
This is not the first time Netanyahu has made grandiose gestures knowing that nothing will come out of it except that daydreaming Western leaders will be pacified.
He has said in the past he is willing to meet with Abbas anytime and anywhere if he would simply recognize Israel as a Jewish state, something which no Arab official will do unless he wants to shorten his life.