16 November 2008

16 November 2008 - Obama backs Saudi peace plan

Via HotAir and the Times of London comes a report that Obama will back the 2002 Saudi peace plan, updated in 2007 to become the Arab Peace Initiative.

The plan offers Israel peace and full normalization of relations in return for a return to the 1967 borders--i.e. giving up all of the West Bank, the Golan Heights, and East Jerusalem. The dovish Abba Eban called these the "Auschwitz borders" because they left Israel in a provocatively weak position against any attack by her neighbors.

In addition, the plan is ambivalent about the solution to the Palestinian refugee problem, which was the reason many critics rejected it.

Obama's position here will be a disappointment to many of those who hoped he would be as pro-Israel as advertised.

First, it cements his flip-flop on the status of Jerusalem. Second, it gives away all of Israel's bargaining chips at the outset to regimes (especially Syria) that have not shown good faith in previous talks. And third, it undermines the understandings reached in ongoing negotiations with the Palestinians that there would need to be border adjustments and land swaps.

Change? You bet. But maybe not the change you voted for. Don't say you weren't warned.

UPDATE: Dennis Ross now says the reports of Obama's support for the Saudi peace plan are false.


At 1:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Saudi peace initiative is the most comprehensive, fair, and reasonable peace plan that has been put on the table by the Arab community. Ever. Returning the Territories is going to happen one way or another, and East Jerusalem is a thorn in Israel's side, with 250,000 Palestinians effectively stripped of civil and political rights. Remember, East Jerusalem was annexed to Israel, and yet the Palestinians living there did not receive any form of citizenship, except for a "permanent resident" status which can be easily lost, if, for example, that person decides to pursue graduate school in the U.S. and is absent for an extended period of time.

There is nothing really controversial about the peace plan. Most Israelis have accepted its general outline. To speak of Abba Eban is anachronistic and misleading. When he made that statement nobody was even willing to engage the PLO. Times have changed.

After reading this blog for the past six months or so, I confess I'm puzzled. How did you win a prize for "left wing blog"? There's nothing even remotely left wing about this blog - it's basically a rehashing of the Likud platform, mixed in with some Kadima and GOP rhetoric.


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