Earlier this month, George Mitchell held a press briefing about his efforts to achieve a “comprehensive peace” in the Middle East, noting he had made four trips to meet with
Asked if EU diplomat Javier Solana was correct that the
As I said earlier, we’re going to move as promptly as possible. And in my opening remarks, I said that we hope to conclude the discussions in which we’re now engaged very soon. To me, it’s a matter of weeks, not many months, so he may well be right. But we’re going to see how well we can proceed. . . . [S]o I’ll call him when we’re ready and he can announce that, and then you can have the results then. (Laughter.)
The noteworthy part of that response is Mitchell did not deny that an American peace plan is coming -- soon.
Continue reading at Contentions.POSTSCRIPT (July 1, 2009): Thank you to Omri Ceren of Mere Rhetoric for his provocative post on my post. Thanks too to the many commenters at Contentions for an interesting thread – in particular for the following comments, reprinted here not because I necessarily agree with them but because they are thought-provoking: Ian: “[A] ‘peace process’ that . . . sees every empirical indication that peace cannot rationally be achieved as a signal for a more comprehensive process with more comprehensively one-sided concessions that effectively reward the very violent behavior that the “peace process’ is supposedly attempting to eliminate, is a strategy so contradictory and illogical in its basic assumptions that its failure is preordained." J.E. Dyer: “The Obama administration’s proposals for the global good have been sinking like rocks wherever he makes them. He has been rebuffed not just by Russia, China, and Iran but by our allies in Europe. The likelihood is strong that we will see more dismissals in Latin America in the not-too-distant future. If Bibi has to stonewall a bad deal urged on him by Obama, he will be in a broad and growing company.” Adam: “Nobody believes in any of these peace plans anymore -- they’re like blessings before meals that everyone has forgotten the words to. . . . The Israelis should just hunker down, give the required affirmations in sufficiently vague and hedged language, and prepare for the post-American era by forging alliances with other countries concerned about the vacuum Obama’s foreign policy is opening up -- first of all India, but who knows what else might be possible as other countries wake up to the new multi-polar situation? If we learned one thing from Obama’s response to the Iranian intifada, it’s that America won’t be “meddling” on the side of freedom or allies -- we should stop complaining about it, and start developing new ways of thinking about the world with a big hole (soon to be filled) where America used to be.” Rick: “The IDF is dramatically more powerful than in 2001. . . Israel’s economy is much stronger and diverse. They might pass Germany, France and the UK in per capita incomes by 2012 if pre-recession growth returns, as it will eventually. Military spending as a % of GDP is lower and the wall has all but ended suicide bombs. I understand you want the USA as a staunch ally as under Bush; however Israel is well positioned to deal with a weak USA President.” Rick: “At this time polls show Israelis do think Obama IS anti-Israel and have good reason to think so. I happen to think it’s more a matter of gross incompetence due in part to his lifelong radical left background and in part his arrogance and in part his total lack of experience. His strangely rigid position on settlements provided Netanyahu the circumstances to unite Israeli public opinion behind his coalition while rendering Kadima to near isolation. Obama also provided Abbas the excuse to do nothing. He can’t do anything anyway but that’s a different issue. Netanyahu has run a clinic on political maneuvering on the incompetent Obama. He drew a line in the sand for no reason and drew it in the wrong place anyway. He’s been inept.”