Israeli/Palestinian Peace Talks: Dead on Arrival

Israeli/Palestinian Peace Talks: Dead on Arrival
by Stephen Lendman
So-called peace talks are fake. They’re a sham. They’ve always been this way. Decades of talks were stillborn from inception. This time’s no different. 
Chances for a just peace are ZERO. Palestinians have no say. Believing otherwise defies reality.
Israel deplores peace. So does Washington. They’re jointly running things. Both nations are longstanding imperial partners. They prioritize violence and instability. Peace defeats their agenda.
They don’t negotiate. They demand. It bears repeating. Palestinians have no say whatever. They never did. They don’t now.
Abbas is a longstanding Israeli collaborator. He sold out long ago. He betrayed his own people. He’s well compensated for doing so. 
He surrendered at Oslo. So did other Palestinian co-collaborators. They did so in subsequent agreements. They included Oslo II, Wye River, Camp David, Taba, Bush’s Road Map, Annapolis, and other one-sided deals.
Israel’s all take and no give. So is Washington. They’re allied against Palestine. High-sounding rhetoric is cover. It reflects doublespeak duplicity. 
Israeli/US policies won’t change. They’re hardline. They’re hard-wired. They’re fixed. They won’t change. They never have. They won’t now. Long suffering Palestinians are on their own. It’s always been this way. It’s no different now.
Palestine’s legitimate government is excluded from talks. It’s the one Palestinians elected. Imagine proceeding on this basis. Doing so puts a lie serious peace efforts. 
Imagine declaring a democratically elected government a terrorist organization. It’s because it wants Palestinians to live free, on their own land, in their own country. 
Israel calls it a crime. So does Washington. Imagine holding talks on this basis. Doing so puts a lie to legitimacy. It mocks the very notion. 
It shames anyone believing otherwise. Media scoundrels lined up in lockstep. They support the Big Lie. They endorse it. It doesn’t surprise. The New York Times was typical. 
On July 19, it headlined “Kerry Achieves Deal to Revive Mideast Talks,” saying:
“Israeli and Palestinian leaders have ‘established a basis’ to resume direct peace negotiations for the first time in three years, Secretary of State John Kerry announced Friday, after an intense round of shuttle diplomacy aimed at reviving the dormant Middle East peace process.”
It’s not “dormant.” It’s dead. It’s nonexistent. Don’t expect Times contributors to explain. They pretended John Kerry’s rhetoric was sincere. They quoted him saying:
“The representatives of two proud peoples today have decided that the difficult road ahead is worth traveling and that the daunting challenges that we face are worth tackling.”
“They have courageously recognized that in order for Israelis and Palestinians to live together side by side in peace and security, they must begin by sitting at the table together in direct talks.”
On September 30, 1938, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain declared “peace for our time.”
Only fools believed it. Wise men knew otherwise.
Chamberlain returned from Munich. He waved Hitler’s agreement. It wasn’t worth the paper it was written on. 
Hitler knew it. Chamberlain pretended otherwise. So did others. They did so foolishly. Hard reality awaited. WW II followed. Tens of millions perished. So much for “peace for our time.”
“We, the German Fuhrer and Chancellor, and the British Prime Minister, have had a further meeting today and are agreed in recognizing that the question of Anglo-German relations is of the first importance for our two countries and for Europe,” said Chamberlain. 
“We regard the agreement signed last night and the Anglo-German Naval Agreement as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.” 
“We are resolved that the method of consultation shall be the method adopted to deal with any other questions that may concern our two countries, and we are determined to continue our efforts to remove possible sources of difference, and thus to contribute to assure the peace of Europe.”
A follow-up statement added:
“My good friends, for the second time in our history, a British Prime Minister has returned from Germany bringing peace with honour.” 
“I believe it is peace for our time…Go home and get a nice quiet sleep.”
According to TimesSpeak, resuming Israeli/Palestinian talks suggests “progress.”
Israeli negotiator Tzipi Livni was quoted saying “four years of political stagnation are coming to an end.”
Times contributors stopped short of declaring “peace for our time.” Despite daunting obstacles, perhaps they believe it. 
Fools go where angels fear to tread. Peace is a convenient illusion. It’s always been this way. It’s no different now. Big Lies don’t wash. High-sounding rhetoric rings hollow.
In 1993, Edward Said minced no words denouncing the Oslo Accords and Declaration of Principles. 
He explained “the fashion-show vulgarities of the White House ceremony, the degrading spectacle of Yasser Arafat thanking everyone for the suspension of most of his people’s rights, and the fatuous solemnity of Bill Clinton’s performance, like a 20th century Roman emperor shepherding two vassal kings through rituals of reconciliation and obeisance, (and) the truly astonishing proportions of the Palestinian capitulation.”
It was unilateral surrender. It was a Palestinian Versailles. It affirmed a vaguely defined negotiating process. No fixed timeline or outcome were specified. 
Israeli officials obstructed and delayed. They refused to make concessions. They continued stealing Palestinian land. They never stopped.
Colonization is official Israeli policy. It wants all valued Judea and Samaria areas. It wants Jerusalem as its exclusive capital. It prefers Palestinians cast into the sea. 
At most, they’ll get worthless cantonized scrubland. They’ll continue being persecuted ruthlessly. Resisters will be brutally treated. Thousands of Palestinian political prisoners fill Israel’s gulag. It’s one of the world’s worse.
In 1993, Palestinians got nothing for renouncing armed struggle, recognizing Israel’s right to exist, and agreeing to leave major unresolved issues for later final status talks. They’re still waiting.
Major unresolved issues include an independent sovereign Palestine, ending Israel’s occupation, the right of return, settlements, borders, water, air and resource rights, and East Jerusalem as Palestine’s exclusive capital.
Mazin Qumsiyeh’s a distinguished Palestinian academic. He serves on multiple boards. 
They include Peace Action, the US Campaign to End the Occupation, the Palestinian American Congress, Association for One Democratic State in Israel/Palestine,, and
He’s unequivocal saying:
“Mr. Abbas agreed to go back to public negotiations with a pathological liar.”
“Private negotiations have been ongoing behind the
“Public and private negotiations for the past 20 years produced nothing tangible except increasing the number of colonial Jewish settlers in the West Bank from 200,000 in 1992 to 650,000 today and subcontracting Israeli security to Palestinian security officials.”  
“Israel will release some prisoners (and replace them with others) and the US will give more money to corrupt officials on all sides.”  
“The question is whether the only two choices available to us are sitting around not doing anything or going to fruitless unbalanced negotiations intended to liquidate Palestinian rights?” 
“Do we really give up on resistance, on democratizing the PLO or on freedom or on human rights?”
BDS efforts are working, said Qumsiyeh. Mahmoud Abbas and complicit Palestinian officials spurn them. They’re working on normalizing Israeli/Palestinian relations. 
They’re doing so deceitfully. They’re in it for self-serving reasons. They don’t give a damn about Palestinian rights. They never did. They don’t now. 
It shows in their overt betrayal. They say one thing. They do another. Why Palestinians put up with them, they’ll have to explain.
Robert Danin’s a Council on Foreign Relations Eni Enrico Mattei Senior Fellow for Middle East and African Studies. From 2008 – 2010, he conspired with Tony Blair. 
He’s a reinvented war criminal. He’s the Quartet’s Middle East envoy. He’s an imperial tool. Danin worked closely with him.
On July 20, he headlined “Secretary Kerry’s Creative Ambiguity and Israeli-Palestinian Peace Talks,” saying:
His announcement about talks resuming “was short on details and ambiguous, even by diplomatic standards.”
“Such imprecision at first blush suggests that the parties still have a ways to go before America’s chief diplomat can declare negotiations fully back on track.” 
“But it also reflects a highly creative use of diplomatic ambiguity as a means towards allowing each side to find a way back to the negotiating table.”
“Getting the two sides to agree to an enduring peace agreement will require clarity and transparency – two elements lacking to date.” 
“Substantive progress will require Secretary Kerry’s constant engagement and a tremendous expenditure of diplomatic capital. That alone, however, is unlikely to be sufficient.”
To his credit, Danin suggested something’s rotten in Denmark. He didn’t explain what’s most important. Talks are more pretense than real. Peace is a convenient illusion. He knows. He didn’t say.
On July 19, Mossad-connected DEBKAfile (DF) headlined “Kerry obtains Israeli, Palestinian consent to negotiate interim accord, without borders issue.”
DF claims it knows details Kerry didn’t reveal. Netanyahu agreed. 
“(F)orthcoming negotiations (will) focus on attaining an interim peace accord – without determining final borders – for establishing a Palestinian state in broad areas of the West Bank from which Israel would withdraw,” it said.
Fact check:
Israel withdraws nowhere. Gaza’s August 2005 disengagement achieved nothing. Less than two years later, siege followed. It remains virtually unchanged. So did war, intermittent bombings, and regular incursions.
Israel maintains de facto control over all West Bank and East Jerusalem territory. Peace talks won’t change things. They never did before. They won’t now.
Two states once were possible. No longer. Israel controls over half the West Bank and much of East Jerusalem. More is added daily. 
When completed, Israel’s apartheid wall will control over 10% of Palestine. Maybe 12% or more. Isolated ghettoized bantustans on worthless scrubland won’t work. 
Sovereign viability’s a convenient illusion. It’s impossible. One state for all its people alone makes sense. Nothing else.
According to DF, Palestine, as negotiators define it, will be “subject to trilateral US-Israeli-Palestinian consensus on security arrangements, and require some Jewish settlements to be removed.”
None will be removed. New ones may be built. They’ll all expand. Some may be consolidated by combining them. More stolen land will facilitate doing so.
“Initial negotiations will start next week in Washington behind closed doors.” Secrecy alone belies credibility. Transparency is vital. 
Palestinians have a right to know what’s being negotiated in their name. They have no say whatever. Israel and Washington control things. Take it or else is policy.
Talks will last “no less than nine months,” said DF. Israel duplicitously agreed to a “partial” construction “standstill” – “except for building to accommodate natural growth.”
In other words, it’ll continue unabated. Hundreds of new units will be built. Perhaps thousands. Many others will be planned. 
Israel wants all valued Judea and Samaria areas Judaized. It wants Jerusalem as its exclusive capital. It’s longstanding policy. It won’t change now. Abbas knows it. He pretends otherwise.
He “dropped his stipulation for a total construction freeze.” He never had one. He only claimed to. He lied. He’s a serial liar. He repeatedly broke major promises made. He serves Israeli interests. He’s disdainful of Palestinian rights.
He pledged “not to carry out his threat to push anti-Israeli measures through UN and other international institutions during the talks.”
He won’t do so under any conditions. His talk is cheap. It’s meaningless. Rogue leaders operate that way.
Kerry “persuaded (him) to waive his ultimatum for peace talks based on 1967 borders.” He settled for Obama’s duplicitous promise.
He’ll “send him a letter affirming US recognition that the object of the negotiations is to establish a Palestinian state as the national home of the Palestinian people whose borders will be based on 1967 lines.”
Weasel wording will disguise his intent. Palestine won’t choose borders. Israel and Washington alone have final say. They control the agenda. They’ll decide terms.
Israel’s the only country without fixed borders. It’s because land theft is planned. It won’t stop until Israel gets all it wants.
“Obama will send another letter to Netanyahu, affirming that the negotiations must lead to the recognition of the state of Israel as the national home of the Jewish people, whose future borders will be based on the 1967 lines while also accommodating Israel’s security needs and its realistic demographic circumstances.”
In other words, he’ll assure Netanyahu what he already knows. Whatever he wants, he’ll get. A bus awaits Palestinians to be thrown under. They know the drill. It happened so often before.
It bears repeating. This time’s no different. Betrayal’s baked in the cake. It’s longstanding reality. Liberation’s a distant dream. Maybe some day. Not now.
A Final Comment
On Sunday, Netanyahu held his weekly cabinet meeting. Negotiations won’t be easy, he said. He disingenuously said he’s “entering them with integrity, honesty and hope.”
He lacks honor, morality, and ethical honesty. He’s unscrupulous. He spurns rule of law principles. He mocks democratic values. He reflects the worst of rogue leadership. He’s all take and no give.
“Our negotiating partners will have to make concessions that enable us to preserve our security and crucial national interests,” he said.
In other words, what Israel says goes. Palestinians have no say. It’s always been that way. Expect nothing different now.
Netanyahu called new talks “an essential strategic interest for Israel.” He stopped short of explaining what he means.
Peace for our time won’t happen. It remains a convenient illusion. Settlement construction will continue unabated. It’s on stolen Palestinian land.
Abbas won’t stop it. He’ll pretend otherwise. “We must continue the peace process that we started a few years ago and finish it,” he claimed.
Senior Hamas official Fawzi Barhoum calls talks a “disaster.” He said so for good reason. Abbas’ notion of peace is sellout. 
It’s cover for Israel’s Judaization project. It’s unconditional surrender. It’s baked in the cake. It’s coming. Expect it next year or sooner.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 
His new book is titled “Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity.”
Visit his blog site at 
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

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