Friday, June 10, 2011

No September, No Freeze, Now back to talks?

"The September Tsunami" they all cried out, pressuring Netanyahu to offer a far reaching initiative to revive the peace talks, seems like it was just one of the tactics everybody agreed to use to threaten Netanyahu of growing isolation and facing consequences if and when the UN passes a resolution recognizing a Palestinian State in the 1967 borders, a Gun without bullets:

Faced with opposition from the United States, a number of top Palestinian officials are quietly advising President Mahmoud Abbas to drop plans to seek recognition for a state at the United Nations this fall.

Top Palestinian officials said that while Abbas remains committed to his plan, he would like to have an option to "climb down from the tree” and find a mutually acceptable formula for restarting negotiations with Israel, preferably based on ideas presented by President Barack Obama recently.

Some Palestinian sources said that there is a widespread sense that Abbas, having advertised his intentions so prominently, has left himself with little room to maneuver and may proceed with the UN gambit simply to avoid a loss of credibility.

“We are trapped with September,” said one official. “We don’t know what to do after that.”

“There are no clear Palestinian options,” Hani Masri, an analyst affiliated with Abbas’ inner circle, said. “Abbas will definitely go to the UN to preserve his credibility. But if there is any other chance of getting back to the negotiations, he will do that.”

Martin Indyk in FT Op-Ed draws the same conclusion:
"Threatening a UNGA vote on Palestine is a useful tactic for upping the pressure on Mr Netanyahu and Mr Obama. But what will he do when Palestinians awake to the reality that the Israeli military occupation has not ended and demand to know “Where’s our state?” If his only answer is a US-vetoed Security Council resolution, it will trigger further disillusionment in his already tarnished presidency. That is why he now declares his preference is for direct peace negotiations with Israel."
Chief Palestinian negotiator said in Washington this week he is even ready to drop his precondition of a settlement freeze.