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Tuesday, September 07, 2010

The desperation summit

Benjamin Kerstein has the best name I've seen yet for last week's summit in Washington. He calls it the desperation summit.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is currently sitting on a relatively comfortable status quo. Both the Israeli and Palestinian economies are doing well, violence is at a minimum, Fatah is cornered politically between Israel and Hamas, and the rightwing members of his coalition who are opposed to any territorial concessions on principle are relatively happy. Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas is not in nearly as sanguine a position, but he is not doing particularly badly either. He has maintained his office despite his unpopularity, prevented Hamas from taking power in the West Bank, and led the Palestinians into a growth economy that is finally reversing some of the damage done by the second intifada.

Neither man, in short, has the slightest interest in upsetting the apple cart.

In fact, only one man does. With the American economy still sluggish, his administration distracted by what it considers to be peripheral issues like the Park51 mosque, his poll numbers collapsing, and with no substantial foreign policy achievements whatsoever to boast of, Barack Obama is put simply, desperate for a win.
Read the whole thing. With all of Abu Bluff's threats and rhetoric over the last couple of days, a win for Obama is looking less and less likely.


At 10:50 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Don't look for the direct talks to get underway any time soon. Washington this month was probably the last meeting we'll see between Netanyahu and Abu Bluff this year.


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