"My hope is that once direct talks have begun, well before the moratorium has expired, that that will create a climate in which everybody feels a greater investment in success.”
President Barack Obama, after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Obama also added of their previous meeting in May, widely panned as a disaster, was badly misrepresented by the media (a common Obama phrase): “The last time the prime minister came here, we had a terrific meeting.” And, “Not only is Netanyahu smart and savvy, the fact that he is not perceived as a dove in some ways can be helpful. Any successful peace will have to include the hawks and the doves on both sides.”
But, “being hopeful is not the same as being blindly optimistic." Obama expects a two-state solution before the end of his first term.
Meanwhile, “If it’s up to me, we’ll have an agreement,” Benjamin Netanyahu promised “foreign policy experts” at the Council on Foreign Relations. He expects a two-state solution by the end of 2011.
"I decided, unlike any previous government, to freeze the construction in new settlements for 10-month period to encourage the Palestinians to enter peace talks. So far seven months have passed and they haven't come in. They should have come in 12 months ago, seven months ago. We should not waste any more time... We have shown good will... I think we have done enough, let us move onto direct talks."
We would like to note that the CFR’s board of directors and other council members, which is nothing more than a government-front for Washington elitism, includes: Thomas Freidman, Fareed Zakaria, David Rockefeller, Madeleine Albright, Richard Holbrooke, Zbigniew Brzezinksi, George H.W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Robert Gates, Robert Kagan, Henry Kissinger, John McCain, Condoleezza Rice, and Paul Wolfowitz, among many others. The list reads less like “foreign policy experts,” more like the destroyers of US foreign policy and whatever part of the world it comes into contact with.
Hard to spot any friends of the Palestinians at CFR.
Netanyahu then criticized Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas: "You can't go on a trapeze, hold out your hand and have no partner on the other side.”
Naturally the Palestinians haven’t rushed in to greet Netanyahu, someone with zero credibility within the Palestinian Authority and the Arab world. The Wall Street Journal reports, "Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said the Palestinians hear Mr. Netanyahu talk but don't see him backing it with actions, such as completely stopping building in Jewish settlements and in East Jerusalem.”
And so the show goes on.