POSTED RESPONSES TO A COLUMN IN TORONTO'S GLOBE AND MAIL
It cannot come too soon.
Abbas is a pathetic figure, representing a Palestinian version what in the United States used to be called a Step'n Fetchit, indeed there was a minor black comic actor who went by that name in early American films.
He has never served his people well, not through any bad intent on his part, but through a complete lack of the skills needed for his position.
It has at times been genuinely embarrassing watching him quietly swallow the garbage Israel regularly pitches in public, claiming it is working on the "peace process" while stealing more of other people's land almost daily.
But, of course, one must also take account of the long line of assassinations of Palestinian leaders by Israel, including quite likely Arafat, who was probably poisoned in the same secretive way as an early attempt on Sheikh Yassin before he was finally blown up in his wheelchair by a Hellfire missile.
I applaud your sentiments, but they are just that sentiments, and sentiments have no role in the ugly game of power politics being played by Israel.
Israel has made it abundantly clear that it will never accept this outcome. Many prominent Israelis are on record as saying not only is a one-state solution unacceptable but also a two-state solution whether federated or not.
The continuous march of settlements and slow-motion ethnic-cleansing taking place in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem is in keeping with long-held beliefs by Israeli leaders that all of the parts of Israel from 2,500 years ago must be Jewish, and that certainly includes the West Bank.
As long ago as the Camp David talks with President Carter, Begin, an old Irgun terrorist, kept telling Carter that Israel must have Judea and Sumaria, ancient names for areas where millions of Arabs live.
That idea is such a fixation for many Israelis that indeed there can never be meaningful peace without U.S. intercession against it.
And what are the prospects for that?