Apparently, David Ignatius of the Washington Post isn’t the only recipient of White House leaks about an Obama peace plan. Helen Cooper of the New York Times chimed in with her own piece this afternoon about the president’s desire to jump into the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.This plan solves nothing other than vanity. The 1967 borders are indefensible for Israel and logistically impossible for Palestine. Israel has stated over and over it will not negotiate on Jerusalem. Hamas and Fatah are still at war. Hamas is still at war with Israel and is supported by Iran. There is so much wrong with this plan.
According to Cooper, the trigger for this latest instance of administration hubris was a recent gathering of former national-security advisers including Zbigniew Brzezinski, Brent Scowcroft, Samuel Berger, and Colin Powell, who were called in to consult with the president and his adviser General James L. Jones. The consensus (only Powell seems to have dissented) was that Obama must put forward his own scheme that would state exactly what the parameters of a peace deal would be. The idea is that peace can only be obtained by the United States imposing it on the parties. The plan is, of course, along the lines of past Israeli peace offers rejected by the Palestinians, plus extra Israeli concessions. The Palestinians give up their “right of return,” and Israel “would return to its 1967 borders,” including the one that divided Jerusalem, with only “a few negotiated settlements” as an exception. The supposed sweetener for Israel is that the United States or NATO, whose troops would be stationed along the Jordan River, would guarantee Israeli security.
Israel needs to start making plans do solve this 60 year old problem itself. It has the firepower and the justification to do it. While I personally believe that Gaza should be turned over to the Israelis for a land swap involving Jordan, Israel and Palestine (fantasy, but hey, so is this plan), this conflict is rotting the state as well as providing fodder for terrorists fighting the West. 30 year of peace plans has gotten nowhere. This thing needs to end now, not in another 30.