Jackson Diehl in the Washington Post says that John Kerry was delusional in thinking he could make peace in the Middle East when he’s up against a bunch of hard cases. Diehl’s series of bad guys goes from the massacring general in Egypt to the massacring president of Syria to… Netanyahu! But hold on.
It might be argued that none of this is Kerry’s fault. It was Gen. Abdel Fatah al-Sissi who hijacked Egypt’s promised political transition. It was the Assad regime that refused to negotiate its departure . It was Benjamin Netanyahu who kept building Jewish settlements in the West Bank. It was Mahmoud Abbas who refused to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
Did you see which walnut shell the pea ended up under? Yep– Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president who “refused to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.”
In fact, Diehl singles out Abbas for more blame than Netanyahu: “Abbas has been strident in publicly rejecting terms Kerry tried to include in a proposed peace ‘framework.’”
But Kerry has said that the Israeli demand Abbas has rejected is “a mistake.” Diehl is siding with Netanyahu. And once again, the Washington Post is valorizing a poison-pill that the Israelis stuck into the peace process, that wasn’t part of any earlier negotiations, so as to blame the Palestinians. As if this Jewish-state recognition, which even the most old and moderate Palestinians are not willing to provide, is equivalent to building 1000s of colonies in occupied territory.