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Netanyahu’s incredible spin: How they once more speak of 'Palestinian rejectionism'

The ‘conflict of narratives’ hoax wins the day.

You’ve got to hand it to Bibi – he is the master of micro-politics. What he lacks in vision he makes up for with details. He is also becoming very good at setting the media’s agenda, something he wasn’t able to do in either his first term or the first couple of years of his second term.

The “Jewish State” demand has effectively cornered Abbas into a familiar position: the Palestinians will reject a generous Israeli offer, without actually being offered anything. This has turned out to be the most incredible turn of events. Netanyahu refused the 1967 borders, refused to accept a Palestinian capital in Jerusalem and even refused a settlement freeze; according to reports, Kerry didn’t get a single concession out of Bibi. But if you listen to the international media, you’ll hear that the talks are about to break down due to Palestinian refusal over the “the Jewish State” hurdle.

Almost everything has been written about Netanyahu’s demand: how, by taking what was an insignificant detail in previous rounds of negotiations and turning it into the heart of the process, he has managed to erase the Palestinian recognition in the State of Israel (which was the Rabin government’s greatest achievement); how he pushed the internal debate inside Israel even further into the ethnic-chauvinistic sphere, ignoring the fact that Israel is already a de-facto bi-national state with a Palestinian minority of more than 20 percent; how he further delegitimized the democratic idea of “a state for all its citizens”; and how he has given an excuse for the American Jewish community to turn its back on the Palestinians and turn a blind eye to the occupation.

The media is not asking the most basic questions: aside from uttering the words “Palestinian state” – a term that becomes more elusive and hollow with each passing day – what exactly has Netanyahu agreed to? What will this state look like? Where does he envision the borders? Ever since he returned to office in 2009, Netanyahu has refused to say anything about everything that matters – borders, settlements, Jerusalem, the Gaza corridor. And he gets away with it.

Following Netanyahu’s footsteps, journalists and officials are now coming out with more talk of a “clash of narratives,” (to quote The New York Times’ Jodi Rudoren) which supposedly lies at the heart of the conflict. Again, this is pure ideological fiction – a hoax which appeals to intellectuals who love words and hate real politics – one that is meant to justify depriving the Palestinian people of their rights for a few more years, perhaps even decades.

This is not a conflict of narratives – not any more than any other conflict in the world is. First and foremost, this is a conflict over assets – in this case we are talking mostly about land. The narrative is strictly a byproduct of that conflict.

It is useful for Israelis and their supporters to speak of “a conflict of narratives” since it makes the two parties seem equally powerful, and some might even say that the Jewish narrative needs more support than the Palestinian one. But if you look at it as a fight over land, you notice that one side has been taking while the other has been losing for the past 120 years. There is no equality in this story whatsoever.

Even if you do not agree with the above view, something else should be said on the topic: it is nearly impossible to reconcile competing narratives. The logic of political compromise – like the two-state solution, or even the one-state option – is that you share the assets and hope that if both sides feel satisfied enough, with time the competing narratives will evolve in a way that they could complete, rather than compete with each other.

By demanding that Palestinians become Zionists – this is what accepting a Jewish state in Palestine means, no? – Netanyahu is not trying to raise “the core problem,” but rather prevent ever reaching a solution, thus allowing Israel to continue chipping away at the real core issue – land.

Read more:
Why I oppose recognizing Israel as a Jewish state
Abbas must seek recognition from UN, not U.S.
U.S. ‘security plan’: Another decisive cave-in to Netanyahu

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    1. shachalnur

      Or the aim of the Israeli Government and the PA is to just go through the motions,and gain time.

      The new US-run peace negotiations started at the same time as the US-Russia-Syria agreement on chemical weapons(big surprise) and the US-Iran peacetalks(another big surprise).

      The US has been kicked out of Egypt,Turkey,Saudi-Arabia and now the PA and Israel are trying to get the US out of their faces as well..

      Nethanyahu said in nov 2013 ,during his visit to Moskow: “I think there is a basic sympathy between our two peoples”.

      Do Israel and Russia have a common enemy?

      Nethanyahu’s brilliant demand-“Jewish State”-is a guarantee the “peacetalks “will “fail”(read: succeed).

      Since Israel knows the US/Europe will not fight any more wars for Israel,to get rid of the US is not easy.

      The world should focus on the Ukraine and Syria and the Sinai ,that’s where the real danger of escalation is ,and that’s where Israel’s worries lie ,more than the Palestinians.

      For 2 years there is no irrefutable proof Israel has bombed any targets belonging to Hezbollah and Assad,neither Hezbollah or Assad attacking any Israeli targets.

      The only ones claiming that, are the US govt. and US/European supported NGO’s.

      On this new global chessboard(since june 2012) Israel has alligned herself with BRICS(Russia/China),and the US/Europe have become the biggest danger to Israel,Syria,Russia,Egypt, Iran, Turkey,Lebanon,Saudi-Arabia,and the rest of the world besides mainland Europe(questionable) ,Japan,Canada,UK and Australia.

      If you miss the big picture you will have to drag yourself from one “inexplicable” event to the other.

      The real war is invisible,the visible war is an illusion.

      Reply to Comment
    2. Vadim

      Noam, you can be a pro Palestinian and still admin that there is rejectionism on their side. I can support Israel and admit and there is reluctance and concern to make too many concessions. Whenever I bring the issue of Palestinian rejectionism, some people automatically start speaking of how Israel actually doesn’t wish peace.

      These are two separate issues and both need to be solved before peace can be achieved. I don’t want to get into whose rejectionism is larger.
      But people *must* admit it exists to some degree on *both* sides.

      That is why it’s completely OK to describe Abbas’s rejection to recognize a Jewish state as a rejection of peace. Maybe Bibi wouldn’t have offered anything, maybe Israel doesn’t really want peace. But the bottom line is – when asked to make a simple announcement for the sake of promoting peace – Abbas refused.

      “By demanding that Palestinians become Zionists – this is what accepting a Jewish state in Palestine means, no?”

      Not quite. We agreed to a two state solution. This means we acknowledge their right for a state. They should acknowledge ours. Not only accept it as a reality they can’t change – acknowledge our RIGHT to have a state in the Land of Israel.

      “Netanyahu is not trying to raise “the core problem,””

      No, this is THE core issue. As soon as the rights of both peoples to live here is acknowledged by both sides – the real discussion for peace and normalization can begin.

      “but rather prevent ever reaching a solution, thus allowing Israel to continue chipping away at the real core issue – land.”

      I don’t understand this. Abbas can simply say yes and thus expose this evil plan.

      Given their situation is so dire – and forget Israel for a second, why don’t they do EVERY possible effort for peace?

      Reply to Comment
    3. Kolumn9

      There is a conflict over land. The conflict is between two ideological groups each of which has a narrative that claims the land. The narrative is what drives Jews to settle the land of Israel. The narrative of rejecting Jews as more than mere subjects is what drives Palestinians to support murdering Israeli civilians.

      If it was a fight over land for a Palestinian state the Palestinians would have long accepted a partition of the land and gone on with their lives. The problem is that it isn’t about land. The Palestinians insist on having a capital in Jerusalem. They insist on the “right of return”. They insist on rejecting recognizing Israel as it defines itself. They reject the premise of ‘two states for two peoples’. These are not the rejections of offers of land because there isn’t enough for a Palestinian State. These are rejections of offers because they don’t line up well with the Palestinian narrative that a Jewish State is illegitimate and must be confronted and defeated. Hanging on to such symbols means the entire premise of finding a compromise solution that would leave Israel in peace is irrelevant and premature. The Palestinians are looking not to build a state but to build a base in order to continue the struggle against Israel according to the narrative and symbols they continue to hold dear.

      No one is asking them to accept that the Jews returning to Israel is legitimate. They are not being asked to become Zionists. They are being asked to recognize that there is a Jewish state that exists here and that the outcome of negotiations is one in which they accept that they will not continue going forward to struggle to change this reality. Recognizing “Israel” while demanding that an agreement leaves ways open for the Palestinians to continue the struggle against the “Jewish State” means they are not actually interested in finding a permanent solution to the conflict.

      Blaming Bibi for persistently pointing out this basic truth is not going to get you very far because Bibi is 100% correct and his position is so easily justifiable that it is trivial for the media to understand and broadcast. The Palestinians are in fact rejecting the solution of ‘two states for two peoples’. They reject it fundamentally as a solution on the basis of their narrative and not on the basis of how much land is being offered. In other words, the Palestinians, since 1947, have consistently and persistently refused to accept an outcome which leaves a Jewish State living in peace in this area. They rejected it then and they are rejecting it now. Placing the blame on them for the breakdown in negotiations is entirely obvious and legitimate.

      Reply to Comment
      • directrob

        I think Noam has the facts and the story behind the facts more accurate.

        Reply to Comment
        • ish yehudi

          but what k9 is pointing out that is true (as far as I’ve seen) is the refusal of Palestinians to see us Jews as a people. Thats’ what underlies the rejection of us being here in a rhetorical/ narrative level. Jews are not a people in their eyes. I’ve heard it over and over and over. And religions don’t have lands, people do.
          It seems a carefully crafted analysis of the Jews in the eyes of our neighbors, to ensure the righteousness of their claim to a full state of Palestine, with no justification for any concessions with us…
          It is definitely in the way of the peace process. meaning a process that leads to two nations side by side having relations together and not wishing (at least) the other one away.
          The claim is perhaps that without the Justice, we can’t have Peace. Meaning, until Palestinians are given their share, they can’t be expected to accept the Jewish people as here with their state. That is logical and reasonable and all, but it is a big maybe that I think Bibi and most centrist Israelis are very wary of jumping through.

          Reply to Comment
        • Kolumn9

          Noam is an apologist for Palestinian rejectionism. He argues that it doesn’t matter that the Palestinians reject the very concept of two states for two peoples because he wants to pretend within this article that this is some kind of routine real estate dispute. The problem is that this reasoning doesn’t hold water just as soon as one asks the basic question of why there is a conflict over the real estate. Then one is left with the basic fact that the reason for the conflict over the real estate is because there are two national movements that both claim the same real estate.

          Of course people like Noam and most Palestinians choose to deem the Jewish people as absent of the right to self-determination so the only kind of article Noam is capable of producing is one that blames Israel unreservedly for the conflict and for the absence of its resolution. Israel, in their eyes is guilty of the crime of its own birth and persists in its guilt due to its continued survival. In that it really shouldn’t be a surprise that he supports the Palestinians in continuing to reject a permanent outcome that leaves Israel breathing.

          The one fact that Noam has right is that the Palestinians are losing and they are losing really really badly. This mostly goes back to their persistent inability to compromise their narrative to accept that the state of Israel is here to stay permanently and that they should find a resolution that will let them too prosper. Instead they are too busy dreaming up self-righteous illusions of how they will one day eliminate Israel in one way or another. Yet until they actually embrace a vision in which they live peacefully in their own state next door to a prosperous Jewish state there is no reason to believe that they are willing to agree to any peace deal the terms of which they are willing to respect the minute after it is signed.

          In another way Noam is partially right. We do demand that the Palestinians become Zionists. Not in terms of recognizing an exclusive Jewish claim to Israel, but in terms of, like Zionism did, embracing a nation-building project and working towards making it a success rather than being stuck in a cycle of never-ending victimhood and defeat.

          Reply to Comment
      • Jan

        Some years ago the Palestinians recognized Israel knowing full well that Israel was a Jewish state. That recognition got them nothing but more occupation, more people imprisoned, more illegal settlements, more brutalization.
        When Egypt and Jordan signed treaties with Israel they were not compelled to recognize Israel as Jewish state. The US did not recognize Israel as a Jewish state. Only the Palestinians are being asked to do this. And if they did I fear that all they would get would be more occupation, more people in prison, more illegal settlements, more brutalization.
        This a ploy by the wily Netanyahu whose every action has shown that he speaks out both sides of his mouth. From one side comes the lie that he wants a two-state solution. From the other side comes approval for more settlements. If Israel had any thoughts of there being a viable Palestinian state, and they don’t, the settlement project would never have begun in the first place.
        Each and every settlement is illegal under international law violating the 4th Geneva Convention to which Israel is a signatory.
        Finally, the Palestinians have given up 78% of their homeland. The West Bank is pockmarked with settlements and settlement only roads. The Palestinians have nothing more to give. They are the occupied. They are the oppressed. It is Israel, the occupier and the oppresser who is the party that bears the greatest responsiblity for the crimes of occupation.

        Reply to Comment
        • Kolumn9

          If the Palestinians recognized Israel as a Jewish State in the past then they shouldn’t have a problem doing so officially now as part of the negotiating framework. So, either they previously recognized the Jewish State (they haven’t) and have now reneged on it, or they have never recognized it. In reality, as far as the Palestinians have been willing to go is to admit that a country called Israel in fact exists at the moment. This recognition of reality is apparently some kind of major step that we should all be thankful for and for which we should shower the Palestinians with rewards.

          Instead the Palestinians have been insisting that although they are currently negotiating with Israel they wish to leave open the possibility that at the end of negotiations there will not be a Jewish State here. In other words, they refuse to actually commit to a resolution based on the ‘two states for two peoples’ framework, and insist on leaving open the possibility that in the future they will resume the conflict against Israel in order to turn Israel into an Arab State prior to renaming it out of existence.

          When Egypt and Jordan signed peace treaties with Israel those countries renounced all claims on Israel. By rejecting the recognition that the outcome of negotiations will be a Jewish State next to a Palestinian State the Palestinians insist that the possibility be open to them to continue claims against Israel indefinitely. In other words, unlike Egypt and Jordan, the Palestinians insist on signing a “peace treaty” which does not bring peace. That is the basic difference between the negotiations between Israel and Egypt and Israel and the Palestinians.

          At this point, since the Palestinians are unwilling to actually end their war on the Jewish State there really is no point in negotiations. The Palestinians at the moment a priori reject a permanent peace with Israel. Regardless of the borders proposed in the past the response since 1947 until this very day to the idea that the Palestinians would have an independent state next to a Jewish State has been a loud and resounding NO.

          If the Palestinians are in such a desperate situation as you suggest then what kind of complete morons would they have to be to insist on persistently rejecting generous offers that would have led to an establishment of an independent State? All they are being asked to do is to simply state that they will not continue a conflict with Israel after an agreement is signed on the basis of trying to overturn Israel and turn it into another Arab state. But, no, these “desperate”, “oppressed”, people, who “have nothing left to give” are incapable of actually accepting the idea that a peace treaty will leave Israel as a permanent fixture and insist on being able to revisit this issue at a future time when they are stronger. It isn’t settlements that prevented Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas from accepting previous offers. We have withdrawn settlers and settlements in the past when faced with the possibility of peace. It was a persistent refusal of the Palestinian leadership to face their people and tell them that they have failed to eliminate the State of Israel and they must turn their efforts towards building a prosperous Palestinian State leaving in peace next to the Jewish State rather than continuing to fan the flames of hatred and incite their people to continue to believe in the absurd dream of destroying Israel either immediately (as Hamas insists) or in the future (as Fatah insists).

          Reply to Comment
    4. Danny

      In his core being, Bibi is a fantastic furniture salesman.

      He knows how to entice the customer with informative talk about material and workmanship. He knows how to sweet-talk the customer into imagining the piece of furniture standing in his or her living room.

      And, boy – is he good with getting you a good price. Good price? GREAT PRICE! Just wait here, sir, while I go into my office and figure out a deal for you. That sofa was made for you! Just wait here for a few minutes, I’ll be right back…

      Reply to Comment
    5. Paul Scham

      Noam,
      I think you’re wrong in dismissing the “War of Narratives” as a figleaf for stealing assets. Bibi didn’t invent it; I first heard it as a major force in 2003. It bubbled up; it’s not just an invention though, of course, Bibi is using it as his most successful obstacle, but that’s because it genuinely resonates. See my blogpost where I debunk the demand, at http://blog.partners4israel.org/2013/12/the-demand-for-arab-recognition-of.html
      but I think dismissing it ignores why it’s important. Narratives matter, and not only to intellectuals.
      Paul Scham

      Reply to Comment
    6. george smiley

      “I repeat, Mr Obongo, we are an elite people, proud and domineering. Don’t mess with us.”

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        So says the bully (George) who calls other people bullies if they show him up to be the hater that he is.

        And the difference is? Georgey boy here tries to malign an entire people. We only try to malign Georgey boy. Yet he complains. Go figure …

        Reply to Comment
    7. The whole idea of narrative control is to force the opponent’s words into submission to your own acts. Those in the PA, having little real power, don’t do this very well. But some try. “Right of Return,” which upholds a promise which cannot be socio-economically sustained, is probably the clearest example. If one is against ROR, one is writing off the hope of 5 million. This extended nationalism thus becomes a veto tool within Palestinian politics. I think everyone in the Kerry talks knows that ROR is untenable, yet it is still mouthed as “on the table.”

      The Israeli side does not need a veto, for it is not in a stagnant position. “Zionism” has come to have two meanings in Israel, one subsuming the other. The first is embedded in the Law of Return (of which ROR is the enfeebled mirror image, somewhat intentionally): the safe haven for the Jewish People, the ingathering of the exhiles. While early Zionism need not be seen as a movement for territorial control, any serious ingathering would make it so, for land possession pushed hard enough becomes zero sum. The second definition of Zionism accepts all this but overlays a recovery of all the ancient, ancestral land, including “Judea and Samaria.” The Israeli State, by expanding settlements (which includes the “illegal” ones on its own terms), embraces the second definition of Zionism.

      So “Jewish State” itself takes on two meanings. The first is territory as recognized by its major long term ally, the US. The second fuses “Jewish State” with the expanded definition of Zionism, making a retreat from full recovery of “ancestral land” a sacrifice of the “Jewish People” for peace, as though one is signing off part of one’s birthright.

      So what happens when you ask politicos in the PA about “Jewish State?” Referring to ground encroachment of land, water, and transport potential, they equate “Jewish State” with the expanded definition of Zionism. Given that Israel cannot give up security control in the Jordan Valley (under its own definitions), a position I continue to suspect the Kingdom of Jordan finds palatable, true “Two States” is impossible; “Palestine” will have an enfeebled army with no control over its air space and will not be allowed to invite anyone it likes into its borders.

      It is not that the “two narratives” are incompatible. Rather, “Two States” is illusory, making talk of such, by either side, a lie, and one picks lies of greatest advantage.

      This, in my estimation, is why Abbas has recently (and desperately) suggested that NATO provide a peacekeeping force throughout the nascent Palestinian State aka Judea and Samaria. This would neutralize the second definition of Zionism while meeting the Israeli security demand; so long as Israel provides its own security there, the second definition is operative and encroachment will continue.

      This is why I advocate an economic confederation, with bi-national economic contracts among individuals and a truly independent economic court. Israel gets the second definition of Zionism, but the population of prior residents without such a confederation will continue to lead (increasingly) truncated lives–which will ultimately bit back hard on Israel. Peace talks focused on such a confederation would produce neither “Two States” nor “One State.” Ultimately, however, the confederation would become, internationally, One State, which, when you get down to it, is what the expanded definition of Zionism is all about. The only real questions are the road to that State and its final form.

      The present ruling coalition has one party devoted to at least a partial extended Zionism, perhaps only abandoning full extension over distaste of direct rule of urban dense millions. Many among its coalition partners think similarly (say in Likud). This enhances security need (for the absorbed settlements) and so makes the Palestinian rump territory even less viable as a stand alone. The extended definition of Zionism has entered the government via electoral outcome. It is well on its way to becoming the only definition. “Two States” talk is merely a feel good drug while that proceeds.

      Landlords don’t negotiate unless the law forces them to, but here there is no one to make the law but them. I would have redirected the peace talks to making such law. I do hope the Kerry process shows me wrong. But the satisfied words of the “Israeli narrative” make me think not.

      Reply to Comment
    8. Tomer

      The land stolen from Mizrahi Jews by Arabs is at least 4 x bigger than the current state of Israel.
      That’s why the Arabs have stolen more land from the Jews than vice versa.

      Reply to Comment
    9. Tomer

      The PLO will never recognise Israel as a Jewish State because doing so proves that their own cause is nothing more than blatant lies, myths and distortions.

      Reply to Comment
    10. Bar

      K9 has ably addressed many of the flaws with this essay. I just want to note one small detail about concessions. Israel has released 70 Palestinian murderers, most of whom are responsible for heinous, multiple murders of Israelis (almost always targeting Jewish Israelis).

      Name another country that has ever been required to make such a concession merely to get to “talk” to the other side; the other side being the one refusing to change a single item on the agenda and that telegraphed this refusal before the first prisoner was released.

      Reply to Comment
      • Johnboy

        “Name another country that has ever been required to make such a concession merely to get to “talk” to the other side”

        You appear to be unaware that the release of all prisoners who were incarcerated prior to the Oslo Accords was actually written into those agreements.

        As in: Israel agreed to release them back in the 1990s, and then reneged on the deal.

        It is now expected to live up to that (now decade’s late) obligation, and is now looking to renege again.

        Maybe Israel can turn it an annual event……. you know, pantomime promises to Release The Prisoners! only for Bibi and Livni to rush onstage dressed as Punch and Judy, and all the while leading the crowd in a chorus of “Oh, no you don’t!”

        Reply to Comment
        • Bar

          You’re right. I didn’t know this. So I went back to the accords and still couldn’t find this information. Perhaps you can help me out and show me where release of murderers is part of the Accords?

          http://avalon.law.yale.edu/subject_menus/mideast.asp#1990

          Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Perhaps you can help me out and show me where release of murderers is part of the Accords?”

            A pleasure. The Taba Agreement (the “Interim Agreement signed September 28, 1995”, also known as Oslo II) has this to say on the topic:
            “Israel will release or turn over to the Palestinian side, Palestinian detainees and prisoners, residents of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The first stage of release of these prisoners and detainees will take place on the signing of this Agreement and the second stage will take place prior to the date of the elections. There will be a third stage of release of detainees and prisoners. Detainees and prisoners will be released from among categories detailed in Annex VII (Release of Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees). Those released will be free to return to their homes in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.”

            Oh, sorry, nobody told you that these were the Oslo Accord*s* (as in plural, not singular)?

            Well, gosh, now you know….

            Reply to Comment
          • Bar

            You know, if you’re going to be all supercilious, you might at least try to know what you’re talking about.

            The Taba agreement does refer to prisoner release but first of all it qualifies that the Palestinian security will be revisited within six months. There were significant terror attacks within those six months (in fact, so serious they undermined Peres and got Netanyahu elected).

            More to the point, the Taba agreement specifies that “Israel will release or turn over to the Palestinian side, Palestinian detainees and prisoners…” In other words, not all the prisoners but some prisoners.

            And then comes the most important part regarding our discussion: the prisoner release is specified to be conducted according to the parameters listed in Annex VII to the agreement…which I am quoting below. You will note that not a single one of the murderers released by Israel over the past nine months qualifies.

            http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/ForeignPolicy/Peace/Guide/Pages/THE%20ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN%20INTERIM%20AGREEMENT%20-%20Annex%20VII.aspx

            Annex VII
            Release of Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees

            1. The release of detainees and prisoners, as agreed upon in Article XVI of this Agreement will be carried out in three stages.

            2. The following categories of detainees and/or prisoners will be included in the abovementioned releases:

            a. all female detainees and prisoners shall be released in the first stage of release;

            b. persons who have served more than two thirds of their sentence;

            c. detainees and/or prisoners charged with or imprisoned for security offenses not involving fatality or serious injury;

            d. detainees and/or prisoners charged with or convicted of non-security criminal offenses; and

            e. citizens of Arab countries being held in Israel pending implementation of orders for their deportation.

            3. Detainees and prisoners from among the categories detailed in this paragraph, who meet the criteria set out in paragraph 2 above, are being considered by Israel to be eligible for release:

            a. prisoners and/or detainees aged 50 years and above;

            b. prisoners and/or detainees under 18 years of age;

            c. prisoners who have been imprisoned for 10 years or more; and

            d. sick and unhealthy prisoners and/or detainees.

            4. The third stage of release will take place during the permanent status negotiations and will involve the categories set out above, and may explore further categories.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “The Taba agreement does refer to prisoner release but first of all it qualifies that the Palestinian security will be revisited within six months.”

            Followed by some extensive quotes from Annex VII, not a one of them so much as hinting that the issue of prisoner release “will be revisited within six months”

            Apparently Israel makes an “agreement”, but then has a “right” to unilaterally alter the terms of that agreement later.

            Hmmm, so in what way is that an “agreement”, if one side can unilaterally alter it?

            Reply to Comment
          • Bar

            Look, it’s not my fault you brought up an agreement that doesn’t say what you claim.

            The agreement specifies that certain issues will be revisited. Security is one of them. Second, the release of prisoners is listed in an annex and defines whom shall be released. Two different section of the agreement, in other words.

            The point remains that your initial claim that Israel was in violation of the Accords and had to release prisoners as part of these agreements is FALSE. My claim, on the other hand, that this was a huge sacrifice on the part of Israel remains TRUE.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “The agreement specifies that certain issues will be revisited.”

            Indeed, and…..
            “Security is one of them.”

            But note that “prisoner releases” is not another one…..

            “Second, the release of prisoners is listed in an annex and defines whom shall be released.”

            Indeed true, and note (again) that the definition of “whom shall be released” is not listed amongst the “issues that will be revisited”.

            That’s the funny thing about a “definition”…..

            “Two different section of the agreement, in other words.”

            Agreed, so why do you conflate them into one i.e. insist that “prisoner releases” is one of the issues to be “revisited”, when it is clear from your own quotes that it is not.

            Reply to Comment
          • Bar

            I conflate them into one because its one agreement.

            Either way, however, you lose.

            If it’s only that they revisit security arrangements, then the Palestinian bombings gave them the right to revisit all security arrangements. Prisoner release certainly may qualify.

            If it’s only that they may only release certain prisoners as per the annex. Then that’s fine as well because none of the prisoners freed in this recent round qualified then or ever.

            Take one, take the other, take both. It doesn’t matter. You were wrong at the start and you are wrong now. Israel made a significant sacrifice and concession with this prisoner release.

            Reply to Comment
        • Tzutzik

          “You appear to be unaware that the release of all prisoners who were incarcerated prior to the Oslo Accords was actually written into those agreements.

          As in: Israel agreed to release them back in the 1990s, and then reneged on the deal.”

          A usual one sided comment.

          Stopping terrorism was also written into Oslo. And what happened? The Intifada happened after Ehud Barak’s peace offer. Mind you, even before that, Arab terrorism never stopped. So much for Oslo. Oslo died a long time ago. Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Al Aqsa brigades and Arafat made sure it was still born.

          Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Stopping terrorism was also written into Oslo.”

            Ahem. According to the text of the Oslo II agreement (you have read the documents, right?) this is the key passage regarding stopping terrorism:
            “Israel shall have the overriding responsibility for security for the purpose of protecting Israelis and confronting the threat of terrorism.”

            “And what happened?”

            Well, gosh, I’d have to say that the IDF talks a good talk, but can’t walk the walk.

            The Oslo II agreement is clear: the principal responsibility for “stopping terrorism” rests with the IDF, and the role of the PA security forces is to cooperate and coordinate with the IDF.

            But, so sorry, if “terrorism” isn’t “stopped” then the fault must surely lie where the responsibility falls i.e. upon the many, many failings of the IDF.

            Reply to Comment
          • Bar

            More ignorant claptrap justifying the unjustifiable. Here is what your Taba II agreement:

            ARTICLE XV
            Prevention of Hostile Acts

            “1. Both sides shall take all measures necessary in order to prevent acts of terrorism, crime and hostilities directed against each other, against individuals falling under the other’s authority and against their property and shall take legal measures against offenders. ”

            And it was well known that Arafat was covering up and inspiring Hamas at the time. Dahlan even spoke about how they were protecting Hamas.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “And it was well known that Arafat was covering up and inspiring Hamas at the time.”

            Note how effortlessly hasbarah goes from quoting from the text to “it was well known that”… as if “that” was an indisputable fact acknowledged by all.

            “Dahlan even spoke about how they were protecting Hamas.”

            Did he now?

            This would be the same Dahlan about whom “it was well known” that he poisoned Arafat on the orders of Sharon, correct?

            Reply to Comment
          • Bar

            “Sharon, Dahlan, Arafat”

            Right, and Israel poisons Palestinian wells and sends spy birds to Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

            Dahlan was Arafat’s muscle, you ignoramus. He is a threat to Abbas right now and has been openly critical of his leadership. So this week, it is Dahlan, not the Israelis who killed Arafat. Oh wait, it was the Israelis and Dahlan!

            As long as it wasn’t old age and HIV…

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Right, and Israel poisons Palestinian wells and sends spy birds to Turkey and Saudi Arabia.”

            Progress of a sorts, I suppose.

            You and I both agree that scuttlebutt is not the basis for a reasoned argument.

            Which leaves me rather mystified as to why your original post contained this gem: “And it was well known that Arafat was”….

            Scuttlebutt much, Bar?

            Reply to Comment
          • Bar

            Dude, you don’t know when to pack that tail between the legs and crawl away.

            http://youtu.be/JxbTrml1Be0

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Dude, you don’t know when to pack that tail between the legs and crawl away.”

            Followed by a link to Arafat saying this at the funeral to a Hamas operative killed by the IDF:
            “Today, I ask of you, my brothers, to recite to Opening for all our Martyrs, and the last among them, the Martyr, engineer Yahya Ayyash.”

            Pardon me, Bar, but all I am reading is Arafat asking the gathering to say a prayer for someone who was killed by the IDF.

            That’s a long, long, long way from your claim that Arafat “was covering up and inspiring Hamas at the time.”

            Pretty hard to “cover up” for someone who is, you know, dead, and certainly pretty difficult to “inspire” someone who is already six foot under.

            Israel killed the guy, dude.

            At the very least Arafat had to lament the killing of a Palestinian by the forces of an Army of Occupation.

            But that lamentation proves neither that he was supporting nor “inspiring” Hamas.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “But, so sorry, if “terrorism” isn’t “stopped” then the fault must surely lie where the responsibility falls i.e. upon the many, many failings of the IDF.”

            Yea, right JB old boy. Not on those who perpetrate terrorism even during a so called peace accord.

            Blame everyone else except those who are actually to blame. The perpetrators.

            “Hey, we are Palis. We are never responsible for anything. We only have rights. We have no responsibilities”.

            And JB agrees with them … Say no more …

            Reply to Comment
    11. Johnboy

      Bibi gives the appearance of buzzing around without a care in the world, unaware and therefore totally unconcerned about that oncoming windscreen.

      And when he smacks into it then the last thing that will go through his mind will be… his arse.

      But, until that moment, sure, everything will look to be hummin’ along….

      Reply to Comment
      • george smiley

        A nice analogy there, Johnboy.

        Reply to Comment
        • Tzutzik

          “A nice analogy there, Johnboy.”

          Johnboy’s and Smileys wetdream. But it begs the famous quote from Samuel Clements AKA Mark Twain:

          “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”

          Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            I prefer this analogy: no heavyweight boxing champion ever enters the ring thinking that he’s about to lose, and he never, ever, ever sees the blow that send him to the canvas….

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Nice of you to be concerned JB.

            As to the punches that may send us to the canvass, yes no doubt, we will get a few of those. But we will get up and land a few of our own.

            Who will be the last man standing? No one has a crystal ball. But many of us are of the view that if it will be up to us, we will either all shake hands and all of us will walk away peacefully or we will be the last men standing or nobody will remain standing.

            Wrap your mind around that JB and try to work out what I meant by that.

            Reply to Comment
    12. Johnboy

      “Stopping terrorism was also written into Oslo. And what happened?”

      Now is a good time to point out to everyone that according to Article XVI of the Oslo II accord the three-step prisoner release was to be completed as a “confidence building measure”, and Israel reneged on that measure well before the second intifada broke out.

      Indeed, that intifada was triggered in very large part by Israel’s refusal to carry out its obligations under those Accords.

      Tzutzik is doing what he always does i.e. he starts his narrative in the middle, and thereby points to the “reaction” and claims that it is the “cause”.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        Nice lying, nice spinning and nice trying JB.

        The Oslo accords were signed on September 13 1993. The ink hardly dried on the signed papers and if anything Pali terrorism escalated. Here are just a few incidents to refresh your jaded selective memory JB:

        “Sep 24 93
        Yigal Vaknin was stabbed to death in an orchard near the trailer home where he lived near the village of Basra. A squad of the HAMAS’ Iz a-Din al Kassam claimed responsibility for the attack.

        Oct 9 93
        Dror Forer and Aran Bachar were murdered by terrorists in Wadi Kelt in the Judean Desert. The Popular Front and the Islamic Jihad ‘Al-Aqsa Squads’ each publicly claimed responsibility.

        Oct 24 93
        Two IDF soldiers, Staff Sgt. (res.) Ehud Rot, age 35, and Sgt. Ilan Levi, age 23, were killed by a HAMAS Iz a-Din al Kassam squad. The two entered a Subaru with Israeli license plates outside a Jewish settlement in the Gaza Strip, whose passengers were apparently terrorists disguised as Israelis. Following a brief struggle, the soldiers were shot at close range and killed. HAMAS publicly claimed responsibility for the attack.

        Oct 29 93
        Chaim Mizrahi, resident of Beit-El, was kidnapped by three terrorists from a poultry farm near Ramallah. He was murdered and his body burned. Three Fatah members were convicted of the murder on July 27, 1994.

        Nov 7 93
        Efraim Ayubi of Kfar Darom, Rabbi Chaim Druckman’s personal driver, was shot to death by terrorists near Hebron. HAMAS publicly claimed responsibility for the murder.

        Nov 9 93
        Salman ‘Id el-Hawashla, age 38, an Israeli Bedouin of the Abu Rekaik tribe who was driving a car with Israeli plates, was killed by three armed men driving a truck hijacked from the Gaza municipality, in a deliberate head-on collision.

        Reply to Comment
        • Johnboy

          “The Oslo accords were signed on September 13 1993.”

          Ahem. the Taba Agreement (i.e. the Oslo II agreement that contained the article committing Israel to release those prisoners) dates from 28 September 1995.

          It is therefore axiomatic that any list of terrorism that you produce that dates BETWEEN September 1993 and September 1995 can not possibly be used as an excuse for Israel to renege on those releases.

          “Sep 24 93”
          blah
          blah
          blah
          “Nov 9 93”

          I wonder why you stopped at November 9, 1993, when there was a SPECTACULAR example of a terrorist attack that took place on Feb 25 1994.

          Twenty Five dead, I believe, which is many times greater than the sum of **all** the examples that you have listed.

          How odd that you didn’t see fit to mention it.

          Mind you, I’m not *actually* seeing anything on that list of yours that is attributable to either the PLO or the PA.

          An analogy: there were many, many acts of terrorism that took place inside Iraq after the 2003 US invasion and occupation of that country. Would you like to list all of those and then attribute them all to the US Government?

          And if not, well, gosh, why not?

          Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “And if not, well, gosh, why not?”

            There you go again goshing JB old boy. But you conveniently forgot to mention this old little undertaking by your Palis in Taba II which they never completed. why not?

            “The PLO undertakes that, within two months of the date of the inauguration of the Council, the Palestinian National Council will convene and formally approve the necessary changes in regard to the Palestinian Covenant, as undertaken in the letters signed by the Chairman of the PLO and addressed to the Prime Minister of Israel, dated September 9, 1993 and May 4,1994.” (Interim Agreement, September 25, 1995)”

            Oh and back to the September 13 1993 signing of the Oslo agreement and the subsequent escalation of Pali terrorism, you so glibly get over that. But any normal person would rightfully expect, yes EXPECT terrorism not to escalate after the signing of such accords. Yet terrorism escalated right after the signing of the Oslo accords.

            The fact that you so glibly choose to ignore it and zero in on a lone lunatic Israeli (Goldstein) who retaliated in his own stupid way for the numerous attacks by Arabs against Israelis right after the accords, says a lot about you JB.

            You are biased and one eyed to your core. To your minutest little Jew hating, Arab loving, sinews.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Yet terrorism escalated right after the signing of the Oslo accords.”

            Quite untrue.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Quite true.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            Right after the Oslo Accords were signed?

            No, quite untrue.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Well dude, I gave you the statistics. Actually only part of the statistics. The actual list is much longer thant that. Here are some more …

            Sep 24 93
            Yigal Vaknin was stabbed to death in an orchard near the trailer home where he lived near the village of Basra. A squad of the HAMAS’ Iz a-Din al Kassam claimed responsibility for the attack.

            Oct 9 93
            Dror Forer and Aran Bachar were murdered by terrorists in Wadi Kelt in the Judean Desert. The Popular Front and the Islamic Jihad ‘Al-Aqsa Squads’ each publicly claimed responsibility.

            Oct 24 93
            Two IDF soldiers, Staff Sgt. (res.) Ehud Rot, age 35, and Sgt. Ilan Levi, age 23, were killed by a HAMAS Iz a-Din al Kassam squad. The two entered a Subaru with Israeli license plates outside a Jewish settlement in the Gaza Strip, whose passengers were apparently terrorists disguised as Israelis. Following a brief struggle, the soldiers were shot at close range and killed. HAMAS publicly claimed responsibility for the attack.

            Oct 29 93
            Chaim Mizrahi, resident of Beit-El, was kidnapped by three terrorists from a poultry farm near Ramallah. He was murdered and his body burned. Three Fatah members were convicted of the murder on July 27, 1994.

            Nov 7 93
            Efraim Ayubi of Kfar Darom, Rabbi Chaim Druckman’s personal driver, was shot to death by terrorists near Hebron. HAMAS publicly claimed responsibility for the murder.

            Nov 9 93
            Salman ‘Id el-Hawashla, age 38, an Israeli Bedouin of the Abu Rekaik tribe who was driving a car with Israeli plates, was killed by three armed men driving a truck hijacked from the Gaza municipality, in a deliberate head-on collision.

            Nov 17 93
            Sgt. 1st Cl. Chaim Darina, age 37, was stabbed by a Gazan terrorist while seated at the cafeteria at the Nahal Oz road block at the entrance to the Gaza Strip. The perpetrator was apprehended. The Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the murder.

            Dec 1 93
            Shalva Ozana, age 23, and Yitzhak Weinstock, age 19, were shot to death by terrorists from a moving vehicle, while parked on the side of the road to Ramallah because of engine trouble. Weinstock died of his wounds the following morning. Iz a-Din al Kassam claimed responbility for the attack, stating that it was carried out in retaliation for the killing by Israeli forces of Imad Akel, a wanted HAMAS leader in Gaza.

            Dec 5 93
            David Mashrati, a reserve soldier, was shot and killed by a terrorist attempting to board a bus on route 641 at the Holon junction. The Islamic Jihad Shekaki gorup claimed responsibility for the attack.

            Dec 6 93
            Mordechai Lapid and his son Shalom Lapid, age 19, were shot to death by terrorists near Hebron. HAMAS publicly claimed responsibility for the attack.

            Dec 22 93
            Eliahu Levin and Meir Mendelovitch were killed by shots fired at their car from a passing vehicle in the Ramallah area. HAMAS claimed responsibility.

            Dec 23 93
            Anatoly Kolisnikov, an Ashdod resident employed as a relief watchman at a construction site there, was stabbed to death while on duty.

            Dec 31 93
            Chaim Weizman and David Bizi were found murdered in a Ramle apartment. ID cards of two Gaza residents were found in the apartment, together with a leaflet of the Popular Front ‘Red Eagle’ group, claiming responsibility for the murder.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Well dude, I gave you the statistics. Actually only part of the statistics”

            You got that right. You just don’t know how right you are.

            Your claim was this: “Yet terrorism escalated right after the signing of the Oslo accords”

            Note the word “escalated”.

            Yet the only statistics that you have produced (case studies, actually, but that’s another point) are all dated post-Oslo.

            It is impossible to demonstrate an e.s.c.a.l.a.t.i.o.n. unless we also know the equivalent Pre-Oslo statistics, which you have conspicuously failed to provide.

            I repeat: your claim wasn’t that “there was terrorism post-Oslo”.

            No, your claim was something quite different.

            Your claim was that the terrorism ESCALATED post-Oslo, and this you have conspicuously failed to demonstrate.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Sigh ….

            Israeli death rates from terrorism:

            1992 – 6.6
            1993 – 8.6
            1994 – 22.2

            Happy now JB?

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “Mind you, I’m not *actually* seeing anything on that list of yours that is attributable to either the PLO or the PA.”

            Got me there JB (NOT!). But tell me this, did the PLO represent the Palestinian people or not? If not, why did they pretend to? If they cannot negotiate a peace which they can ACTUALLY deliver then what are they doing negotiating on behalf of the Palestinian people?

            Alternatively, tell me this JB: can Israel too play the same silly little game of good cop bad cop? Can we designate a Zahal 1, Zahal 2, Zahal 3 … Zahal 6 army units. Zahal 1 being the good cop and the rest, the equivalents of Islamic Jihad, Hamas etc. and gosh JB, can we too say that we only assume responsibility for what Zahal 1 does? No, I didn’t think you would agree to that JB because you apply one standard to us and another standard to your Palis …

            Now back to your question JB. Get a load of this:

            “Oct 9, 1993 – Dror Forer and Aran Bachar were murdered by terrorists in Wadi Kelt in the Judean Desert. The Popular Front and the Islamic Jihad ‘Al-Aqsa Squads’ each publicly claimed responsibility.”

            I assume you know that Al Aqsa are the military wing of Fatah which is part of the PLO?

            “Oct 29, 1993 – Chaim Mizrahi, resident of Beit-El, was kidnapped by three terrorists from a poultry farm near Ramallah. He was murdered and his body burned. Three Fatah members were convicted of the murder on July 27, 1994.”

            Well, golly gosh, JB, Three Fatah members. Don’t you feel embarrassed now for having shot your mouth off with your silly comment above?

            There you go JB, I saw your gosh and I upped you 3 goshes. What are you going to do now?

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “But tell me this, did the PLO represent the Palestinian people or not?”

            They do, and they committed themselves to cooperating with the IDF in the fight against terrorism.

            They did not – nor could anyone but you have expected them to – commit themselves to the eradication of terrorism.

            “If not, why did they pretend to?”

            They are perfectly entitled to enter into agreements that are binding upon the Palestinian people.

            One of the things they committed themselves to is to cooperate with the IDF in the fight against terrorism.

            Which they do, and to the frequently-expressed satisfaction of… the IDF.

            Indeed, you appear to be the only person on Planet Earth who still insists that the PA **isn’t** cooperating with the IDF in that endeavour.

            Certainly it isn’t listed amongst the litany of complaints that Netanyahu oh-so-frequently shouts out to the world.

            Fancy that: you are further to the right than Netanyahu, Lieberman and Ya’alon.

            Says it all, really….

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Oct 9, 1993”
            blah
            blah
            blah
            “Oct 29, 1993”

            *sigh* The broken record spins…

            I’ll remind you again that Israel AGREED to the release of Palestinian prisoners on September 28 1995.

            It is therefore the utter height of pointlessness for you – or anyone – to point to any acts that occurred BEFORE September 28 1995 and claim that those acts give Israel the excuse to renege upon a deal that was signed ON September 28 1995.

            Pretty simple, really.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “It is therefore the utter height of pointlessness for you – or anyone – to point to any acts that occurred BEFORE September 28 1995 and claim that those acts give Israel the excuse to renege upon a deal that was signed ON September 28 1995.”

            Not exactly JB. It is axiomatic that during a peace accord there should be no terrorism at all.

            No sooner the accord was signed, terrorism escalated.

            So there they were, terrorism never stopped and Rabin put a brave face to it. He said, we fight terror as if there is no peace and we try to make peace as if there is no terror …

            So during that process they make another deal, Oslo II. Another deal involving quid pro quo. And what happens? The Arabs and their supporters, dudes like you JB, complain that Israel does not deliver on it’s part. But they ignore their own non delivery of what they promised. The changing of their covenant within two months. And no it wasn’t Bibi who was complaining about that to start with. It was Rabin. Taba II was in September 1995. Netanyahu first got elected in May 1996 (8 months after Taba II).

            Meanwhile, back in the farm … Not only the Palis failed to change their covenant within two months as promised, but they continued their terrorism.

            But who does JB blame for all this? You guessed it, the IDF. Not the Palestinians who perpetrated terrorist acts. I mean why would they be to blame? They were just doing what came natural to them. Doesn’t everybody commit terrorist acts while they are negotiating a peace deal? I mean the attitude would be funny if it weren’t tragic. The JBs of this world don’t want peace, they are just one eyed clowns.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            Again, the point flies over your head.

            Terrorism occurs in 1993.
            The Oslo II accords were signed in 1994.

            Neither of the two signatories can then turn around and invalidate any articles of a 1994 agreement because of any actions that took place in 1993.

            To do so is a manifest absurdity, because it requires that we believe that the Israelis Did Not Know What They Were Doing when they signed that agreement.

            Terrorism *post* 1994, sure, you’ll have a point.

            But pointing to acts of terror *pre* 1994 is pointless, because the Israelis *already* knew about those acts when they went into the text to decide whether or not to sign that agreement.

            Their decision: we’ll still sign that agreement.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Again, the point flies on YOUR head, JB.

            Oslo was stillborn because of terrorism which escalated and never stopped either in the outset before Oslo II or after it.

            Oslo II required the PLO to deliver on committments which it did not.

            So the height of absurdity is to expect Israel to deliver on its committments while the PLO did not deliver on what it undertook to do.

            And now you are just getting boring JB because you are repeating your nonsense and you are making me too repeat what I already said. In other words, you are now obfuscating.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Iraq does not represent an iota of a threat to the USA. It could afford to end the occupation and leave the Iraqis to sort out their own mess.”

            Non-sequitur.

            The issue is this: does there have to be a cessation of terrorism while a peace agreement is negotiated between:
            a) an occupying power, and
            b) the occupied.

            Iraq is clear and unambiguous proof that the answer is “No”.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            AND JB …

            Non-sequitur

            The US wanted nothing more than to get out of the quagmire of Iraq so it was willing to negotiate under fire. That is/was their business.

            We on the other hand have nowhere to go. We are here to stay.

            AND

            We are not willing to negotiate while we were being murderered at a rate of twice to three times a month. And certainly we were not willing to live up to what the PLO expected of US while the PLO were unwilling (or maybe just maybe unable) to give US what they promised and we expected them to deliver.

            Reply to Comment
    13. Johnboy

      “The PLO undertakes that, within two months of the date of the inauguration of the Council, the Palestinian National Council will convene and formally approve the necessary changes in regard to the Palestinian Covenant, as undertaken in the letters signed by the Chairman of the PLO and addressed to the Prime Minister of Israel, dated September 9, 1993 and May 4,1994.”

      Yep, and that was done. I can even give you the vote-tally if you want them.

      I will point out that they actually did this SEVERAL times, precisely because Israel keep voicing objections.

      Those objections ceased when the PNC got so sick of those Israeli objections that they invited THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES to stand there in the room with them while they took that vote.

      Which he did, and which they did, and at the end of it Prime Minister Netanyahu had to admit that they had done exactly what was demanded of them.

      But, again, you appear to be so far to the right of Netanyahu that he can’t even see you.

      He certainly can’t hear you, because he certainly no longer includes this in his oh-so-tedious litany of Things The Palestinians Won’t Do.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        “Which he did, and which they did, and at the end of it Prime Minister Netanyahu had to admit that they had done exactly what was demanded of them.”

        Really Johnboy? And how long did it take the PLO to get to that point? 2 months? Not on your nelly. It took them till 1998.

        And what happened in the meanwhile? After a short lull in terrorism following Oslo II in 1995, the Palis resumed their terrorist activities against Israeli civilians. Not exactly in line with the spirit of Oslo, is it JB old boy?

        So much for the PLO living up to it’s commitments. Keep on spinning and manipulating the facts JB.

        Reply to Comment
        • Johnboy

          “Really Johnboy? And how long did it take the PLO to get to that point? 2 months? Not on your nelly. It took them till 1998.”

          Oh, sure, it took quite some time to Shut Netanyahu Up.

          Nothing unusual about that, of course, since Netanyahu can talk and talk and talk and talk under wet cement.

          Indeed, it appears that his singular trick is his ability to keep moving the goalposts, and then insist that the other side hasn’t managed to kick the ball into the net.

          Mind you, all this exchange proves is that you don’t understand this article, which is all about how Bibi is so successful at… moving the goalposts.

          Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “Mind you, all this exchange proves is that you don’t understand this article, which is all about how Bibi is so successful at… moving the goalposts.”

            Yep, you are right, I don’t buy the one sided accusations of people like you you are right about that JB. No apologies about that either. Especially since people like you consider nothing more natural than to have continuous terrorism during a so called peace accord. What can one say other than to shake one’s head in disbelief. That is what Israel is up against. Stupid (I am being kind) attitudes like your’s JB.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Especially since people like you consider nothing more natural than to have continuous terrorism during a so called peace accord.”

            Ahem. Iraq, 2003-present.

            The horrendous amount of terrorism that took place there did not prevent the US government from negotiating the end of its occupation with the people it recognized as the legitimate representative of the Iraqi people.

            Don’t be so precious about this, because the Israeli govt **also** has failed to eradicate terrorism, and it has infinitely greater resources at its disposal than does the Palestinian Authority.

            The PA does what it can, and does what it has committed itself to do, and on both counts the Israeli govt, the IDF army of occupation, the US “honest broker” and the Quartet umpires all say that those PA security forces are doing an excellent job.

            Not a p.e.r.f.e.c.t. job, sure, because it is no more capable of doing a p.e.r.f.e.c.t. job than is the IDF.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Keep your Iraq analogy to yourself.

            Iraq does not represent an iota of a threat to the USA. It could afford to end the occupation and leave the Iraqis to sort out their own mess.

            The Palis on the other hand have always presented a threat to Israelis. If Israel would end the occupation prematurely, the Palis would go on having a greater capacity to murder Israelis. So no cigar, the occupation continues and no prisoners should be released either. The fact that even Netanyahu ignores this, shows that he is prone to make mistakes or is prone to give into pressure.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            “Iraq does not represent an iota of a threat to the USA. It could afford to end the occupation and leave the Iraqis to sort out their own mess.”

            Non-sequitur.

            The issue is this: does there have to be a cessation of terrorism while a peace agreement is negotiated between:
            a) an occupying power, and
            b) the occupied.

            Iraq is clear and unambiguous proof that the answer is “No”.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “The issue is this: does there have to be a cessation of terrorism while a peace agreement is negotiated between:”

            Yes there has to be sessation of terrorism while peace agreements are being negotiated. And certainly no escalation of terrorism.

            Otherwise don’t expect terrorists to be released while terrorism is being perpetrated.

            As for your attempt at bringin the Iraq US analogy into this, Non-sequitur. Why?

            Because it is no skin off the US’s nose if Iraqis are stupid enough going on killing other Iraqis (mostly) during negotiations. They are willing to put up with the odd Anerican soldier here or there in body bags because they extract a heavy price for every US soldier’s murder. But we Israelis on the other hand get miffed, to say the least, if your Palestinians pretend to talk peace but go on murdering innocent Israeli civilians during so called peace talks. And when we get miffed, we give you people too reasons to get miffed.

            OK JB? That’s a good sport, keep a stiff upper lip old chap and get used to it.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “Oh, sure, it took quite some time to Shut Netanyahu Up.”

            Netanyahu got elected 8 months after Oslo II. The PLO was supposed to amend it’s charter within 2 months of Oslo II.

            So where does Netanyahu come into it?

            Keep on spinning JB, you will turn into a perpetual motion machine and will solve humanity’s energy problems single handedly … LOL.

            Reply to Comment
    14. Johnboy

      “Not on those who perpetrate terrorism even during a so called peace accord.”

      Non-sequitur.

      Neither the IDF nor the PA Security Forces are “perpetrating” those terrorist attacks.

      However, one of those two organizations *did* put their hand up to take primary responsibility for taking on those terrorists, relegating the other organization to the role of “sidekick”.

      Well, heck, dude, if you put your hand up then you are also accepting the blame for any failure.

      Read the Oslo II accord.

      It very clearly says exactly what I am saying i.e. the IDF claimed responsibility for fighting terrorism.

      It therefore owns the failure to “end terrorism”.

      Don’t blame the sidekick, precisely because he’s only a sidekick.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        “Well, heck, dude, if you put your hand up then you are also accepting the blame for any failure.”

        Whaaaaat, JB? Have you got a concept of what you are talking about?

        Do yoy know the first concept of what responsibility is, Dude?

        If you put up your hand that you want to reach a peace deal, that means that you are responsible for the delivery of peace by YOUR own side!!!

        If you cannot do it, then either you don’t want to do it in which case you have no business to pretend that you want peace, you are just lying, JB.

        Or

        If you can’t deliver peace, then you should not pretend that you represent your people. You should just admit that you are trying to represent a bunch of leaderless rabble, and you actually have no right to pretend that you represent anyone. You are just a fraudster.

        OH and JB, it is not your business to blame the IDF for having failed to prevent terrorism that should not have happened in the first place (during a so called peace accord), it is the business of the Israeli people. But that does not absolve YOUR Palestinians from the blame of breaking the terms of the peace accord.

        Get it, dude? No of course you don’t because you view everything only through one eye. The eye of the Palestinians.

        Reply to Comment
        • Johnboy

          I see the point flies way over your head.

          Over *there* are the terrorists.
          By definition, they are the people who commit acts of terrorism.

          Over *here* are the people who are tasked with countering those terrorists.

          There are two of them:
          a) the IDF, and
          b) the PA Security Forces.

          The former says to the latter: Let Me Deal With This
          and the latter says: Sure, Let Me Know If You Want Any Help.

          Q: Who is responsible for the acts of terrorism?
          A: The terrorists are.

          Q: But who is responsible for the failure to thwart those acts of terrorism?
          A: The IDF is.

          Q: Why?
          A: “Israel shall have the overriding responsibility for security for the purpose of protecting Israelis and confronting the threat of terrorism.”

          If it shuts the PA Security Forces out from any responsibility then it also can’t blame the PA Security Forces for its manifest failure to carry out that job.

          After all, it put its hand up…

          Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            JB:”There are two of them:
            a) the IDF, and
            b) the PA Security Forces.”

            Wrong! There are two of them:

            a) The Israeli people, represented by the Israeli government.

            b) The representatives of the Palestinian people, the PLO.

            The former says to the latter: I will give you land for peace and recognition.
            and the latter says: Yes ok we will negotiate the details. And while we negotiate, we undertake that our people will cease all terrorism.

            JB:”Q: Who is responsible for the acts of terrorism?”
            A: The terrorists are.”

            Observation: Terrorism by a lone or a couple of lone wolf desperadoes would be excusable as rogues. A continuous stream of terrorist acts by many, tells us that the Palestinian people are not on board with the peace process and that the PLO are either fraudsters who don’t represent them or they are in on it too.

            JB:”Q: But who is responsible for the failure to thwart those acts of terrorism?
            A: The IDF is.”

            Observation: In line with the above, there should be no acts of terrorism to stop.

            And here is my rhetorical Q & A.

            Q: And who is responsible for the perpetuation of the torrent of terrorist acts?
            A: The Palestinian people.

            As to the IDF, if they dont manage to stop the terrorists, they are answerable to Israelis. But that is not your concern because you are not Israeli.

            JB:”Q: Why?
            A: “Israel shall have the overriding responsibility for security for the purpose of protecting Israelis and confronting the threat of terrorism.”

            Nonsense, See above.

            JB:”If it shuts the PA Security Forces out from any responsibility then it also can’t blame the PA Security Forces for its manifest failure to carry out that job.”

            I could not give a flying F…K about Palestinian security.

            What I care about is whether the Palestinian people are ready to make peace with Israel or not.

            If terrorism stops, then the answer is YES.

            If terrorism continues unabated, then the answer is NO.

            Get it JB? No, I am sure that you don’t get it. I may as well talk to a brick wall.

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            In the light of the (sad) fact that the “Palestinian people” still do not exist, even after 50 years of intense attempts to create such people, it seems that referring to said people as a player is a bit out of place.

            Reply to Comment
          • Johnboy

            Rather an odd comment, considering that the state of Israel has this to say in 1993: “the Government of Israel has decided to recognize the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people”

            of. the. Palestinian. people.

            Still, what does the state of Israel know, hey?

            Reply to Comment
    15. Johnboy

      “The former says to the latter: I will give you land for peace and recognition. and the latter says: Yes ok we will negotiate the details. And while we negotiate, we undertake that our people will cease all terrorism.”

      Bzzzzzt, thanks for playing but that answer is incorrect.

      At no stage did the PLO “undertake” that there would be no acts of terrorism.

      It undertook that
      a) the PLO would not conduct any acts of terrorism, and
      b) the PLO would cooperate with the IDF in its fight against terrorism.

      Which are, indeed, “undertakings” that it has lived up to, as the IDF and Shin Bet would readily acknowledge.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        JB:”At no stage did the PLO “undertake” that there would be no acts of terrorism.”

        Nice try JB, now read the exact text of the Declaration of Principles On Interim Self-Government Arrangements
        The Oslo Accords Between Israel and Palestine, Sept. 13, 1993

        “The Government of the State of Israel and the P.L.O. team (in the Jordanian-Palestinian delegation to the Middle East Peace Conference) (the “Palestinian Delegation”), representing the Palestinian people, agree that it is time to put an end to decades of confrontation and conflict, recognize their mutual legitimate and political rights, and strive to live in peaceful coexistence and mutual dignity and security and achieve a just, lasting and comprehensive peace settlement and historic reconciliation through the agreed political process.”

        Does the word “Peace” mean anything to you? Do the following words mean anything to you?

        “put an end to decades of confrontation and conflict,”

        No I am sure it doesn’t. I am sure you will find an angle to spin the unspinnable. You always do. Or at least you think you do. But any unbiased person can see through the spin of the likes of you JB. You fool no one except yourself and like minded people of whom there is a plentiful supply in sites like these.

        Reply to Comment
    16. Johnboy

      “Oslo was stillborn because of terrorism which escalated and never stopped either in the outset before Oslo II or after it.”

      What is it with Israelis and moving the goalposts?

      You insisted that Israel has no obligation to release prisoners, even though it agreed to release prisoners.

      You insisted that Israel has a “right” to demand the impossible from the PLO, even though the PLO did not promise to carry out the impossible.

      And now you are resorting to this ludicrous (and furious) handwaving away of obligations, even though Israel signed onto those obligations.

      Israel (apparently) possesses a Magic Wand, and all it has to do is wave that Magic Wand over its head while incanting “Terror! Terror! Terror!” and all previous obligations and all previous agreements are now null and void.

      Fine.

      Now, explain to me why anyone would negotiate anything with any Israeli official knowing full well that this Israeli claims to be in possession of that Magic Wand?

      It is, surely, an exercise in pointlessness to negotiate an “agreement” with a party who can claims the Magic Ability to unilaterally nullify “agreements”.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        “You insisted that Israel has a “right” to demand the impossible from the PLO, even though the PLO did not promise to carry out the impossible.”

        Thanks for admitting that it is impossible for the PLO to deliver peace.

        So what was/is the use of Oslo? Let me remind you:

        TO MAKE PEACE!!!!!!!!

        If the PLO could not or more likely would not deliver peace then Oslo was still born and there was no point to it. Nor was/is there a point to insist that Israel should pretend to act as if there is peace. If the PLO cannot or won’t deliver on it’s promise of PEACE, then they cannot insist that Israel should deliver on what Israel promised.

        Now JB will make “grrrrr” noises and “er gosh” sound effects and will insist that the PLO never promised peace. And that I am changing the goal posts … LOL. He is so predictable and boring.

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