Palestinian warlord Mahmoud Abbas yesterday demonstrated his inability to negotiate in good faith.
This was not surprising – Abbas knows that his political life is circumscribed by two things:
1. No yielding on the intemperate demands of his hardliners (not only among the Palestinian terrorist factions, but also the other terrorist groupings so generously supported by Arab governments).
2. No peace, ever. Even if it means continual violence and chaos.
Abbas, showing the characteristic duplicity of his mentor, insisted that he will not agree on realistic borders, refuses to accept the right of Jews to build in their land, demanded that several million people who were never in British Mandate Palestine be admitted into Israel pronto, and restated his refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
Abbas knows that yielding on any of these points will result in either his own demise, or being forced into exile. Peace would also bring far greater scrutiny and limitations on the endemic corruption of the Palestinian Authority, and might even make the Europeans realize that their generous support of this rapacious clique has resulted in an entirely new class of Arab millionaire.
In this day of diminished expectations, the doctrinaire socialists among the European legislators might have to answer hard questions from their constituencies about such counterproductive spendthriftiness - which explains of course why the Europeans are upset that they weren't invited to the negotiations; one can do much more damage on the inside.
No sitting European politician sincerely wants peace.
Evenso, the chance of these negotiations succeeding is remote. The only possible outcome is a number of photos that show the US president smiling between Netanyahu and the Palestinian warlord.
Followed eventually by pictures of the Secretary of State smiling between Netanyahu and the Palestinian warlord.
President Obama sides with the PA on many issues - perhaps in an effort to pander to the Arabs, whose oil and quiescence we still need. But cognizant of the damage it would do to his image and his party's prospects come November, he has not made any overt declarations. It is in Obama's interest to keep the veil on this farce from being lifted, and the smoke and mirrors from being exposed, for another two months.
For that to succeed, both Netanyahu and the PW would have to keep up the energetic public pretence of bland good-faith diplomacy. A certain level of subtlety is required of both men.
Mahmoud Abbas, by demanding that Obama intervene and force the Jews to continue the building freeze, may have ruined the prospect of any further charades. By so crudely playing to the extremist peanut-gallery, Abbas did Obama no favours.