Wednesday, March 04, 2009

The evanescent two-state solution for Palestine and Israel

Hillary Clinton has garnered some headlines during her visit to Israel for emphasizing the inevitiability of a two-state solution. In contrast, incoming Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu aims to focus on improving economic conditions for Palestinians living in occupied West Bank, while continuing the colonization project that aims to make a viable Palestinian state impossible, except in the minds of gullible western politicians. The Palestinians are certainly not gullible, and with about 500,000 Israelis living either in East Jerusalem or in interconnected settlement clusters in the West Bank, they know that the tipping point is not far away if it has not already arrived.

Here is what Clinton had to say in press conference with Foreign Minister Livni on March 3, 2009 (the conference should be read in full):

"It is our assessment, as I expressed yesterday and again today, that eventually the inevitability of working toward a two-state solution seems inescapable. That doesn’t mean that we don’t respect the opinions of others who see it differently. But from my perspective, and from the perspective of the Obama Administration, time is of the essence on a number of issues, not only on the Iranian threat. We happen to believe that moving toward the two-state solution, step by step, is in Israel’s best interest. But obviously, it’s up to the people and the government of Israel to decide how to define your interests."

Even considering the subteties of diplomatic language, "the inevitability of working toward a two-state solution seems inescapable" sounds to me just like the "successful" incremental diplomacy of now Special Adviser to the Secretary Dennis Ross.

Meantime, did anyone hear a word from Clinton about Israeli settlements?

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