Aren’t the responses below amazing and thought provoking, I’m so impressed! I’m going to give you all a chance to read what was written and give my take on the options available in the next 2 days.
Submitted on 2014/02/22 at 15:08
Erekat is articulate and sounds like a clear-headed and tough negotiator. I don’t like being pessimistic – but unless Kerry shows the Israelis a very big stick (and how likely is that?) there will be little incentive for an expansionist heavy like Netanyahu to make any concessions. He’d rather see the region destroyed than yield anything to the Palestinians.
If the PA is dissolved – and Erekat seemed a little equivocal on that point – the forum for future negotiations would be the UN and Israel can rely on US support there. So the next Intifada awaits . . .
Submitted on 2014/02/21 at 16:40
hi Steve The two states solution,is the only one in my opinion.I am not exactly keen on 1967 border,but that is negotiable.Certainly there will not be a “right of return”
Submitted on 2014/02/20 at 23:57
Steve: I have not listened to the broadcast as I am happy to accept your account of it. I think Mr Erekat’s position is clear – and correct. Israel is drinking in the last chance saloon.
All Palestinians now recognise that the PA represents out-sourced Israeli security on the cheap.
If Israel will not finally agree on a two-state solution then let them pay the price in the form of a de-constructed PA and them (Israel) meeting – in full – the costs of their own security. Ultimately, this will free the EU, the USA and UN from meeting the costs of occupation and will present Israel with the prospect of having to develop a single-state solution.
In the short to medium term, this will almost certainly mean a much harsher occupation policy on the part of Israel which will strip away what little legitimacy and respectability they have. They will be viewed – correctly –as the successors of the apartheid South African system.
Eventually, however, their regime will go the way of the apartheid South African regime and all Palestinians and Israelis will end up in a single-state country.
Israeli leaders like Netanyahu and Bennett cannot prevent this happening. I look forward to the emergence of a new south western Asian country in historic Palestine.
Submitted on 2014/02/20 at 18:17
Thanks for the information about Hardtalk, Steve. It was interesting. Media interviewers are NOT good at listening. I’m not sure whether politicians are either. Social Workers generally are, or should be!… and ordinary people are pretty wise – and to be trusted in a democracy.
It was notable that no reference was made to events before 1967 – apart from reference to the ancient history of the land (I am thinking of the events which created the refugees in such numbers and led to UN Resolution 194.
It may be good that there is a prospect of dissolution of the PA. They do not represent all Palestinians, and have little credibility with the people. Hamas are not much better.
Leaving rule of the all territory from the Jordan to the Mediterranean with the Occupying power -which is the real situation on the ground anyway, just with differential jurisdictions, – will hopefully expose more clearly the Israeli apartheid and racist state/ Zionist colonialist programme for what it is, and always has been… and how tolerable will that be for the Americans and some of their Arab allies?
Roll on BDS.
Submitted on 2014/02/20 at 17:47
Good to hear from you.
I’m not sure there’s anything new there – check out, for example: http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Saeb-Erekat-threatens-to-dissolve-the-Palestinian-Authority
I can’t see these so-called peace talks going anywhere, especially with Israel continuing with their colonisation.
of Palestinian land while they are talking!
Submitted on 2014/02/24 at 12:45
It’s really interesting to receive your regular posts, Steve, and thank you for taking the time to put so much thought into them.
I have just listened to the ‘Hard Talk’ prog. I have every sympathy with Saeb Erekat and congratulate him on hanging in there for 2 decades during which (with the possible exception of Oslo) there have been few grounds for hope. As he says, he has to keep doing it for the sake of his children and grandchildren. For this reason, I wonder whether in fact the Palestinian Authority will completely cease negotiations if the Kerry talks fail.
It was good to hear Saeb say that he had known John Kerry for 26 years and believed he was person best placed to bring proceedings to an agreement . But, sadly, all the indications are (as they have been for a long time) that Israel (at least in the shape of Netanyahu and those around him) has no intention of entering into any negotiations in good faith. Their continued building of new settlements is an outrageous and insulting ‘two fingers up’ to Kerry and Obama (who I believe is doing his best in the face of huge pressure from the American Jewish lobby).
I fear that there can be no two-state solution until and unless some wise, prophetic figure arises to open Israel’s eyes to what it is doing to its fellow human beings ( just as another oppressive regime did to its own people 70-odd years ago) and leads the country down a genuine route to peace.
I also hope that I’m wrong about all the above and that Kerry does manage to make that impossible-seeming breakthrough!
Weiss, Ursula – UK
Submitted on 2014/02/25 at 03:55
Can’t make use of the I Player for this from here because the BBC has access blocked. Only a 4 min snip from the interview is available. Too bad.