At my age, it isn’t often that I am dumbfounded by reading an article in the news. I am more than aware of the war of words which occurs on a daily basis in the various forms of the mass media, between governments, organizations and individuals, as they each strive to psychologically manipulate the general public, and convince them of their particular version of the truth, and their point of view, whatever it happens to be.
But I must admit, that my jaw dropped when I read what Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had to say in an article that appeared in the January 3rd online edition of the Israeli left-leaning newspaper Haaretz.
In the article, entitled “Netanyahu: Israel agreed to new settlement freeze, but U.S. retracted offer”, Mr. Netanyahu makes the bold claim that “The United States asked us to consider extending the freeze by three months, and the truth is that we were prepared to do so.” Furthermore, Netanyahu insists that it was the “United States who decided against that direction, rightfully, in my opinion.” According to the same Haaretz article, the Israeli Prime Minister also stated “I told Obama that I am prepared to go with this to the cabinet and that I will be able to enforce the move, but then I received the surprising phone call from the Americans who said they no longer demand that Israel extends the freeze . . . The Americans were right in saying that the settlement freeze will lead to a dead end, in which we would have entered an endless path of settlement freezes, but despite it all, I agreed to go through with it.”
What a far cry from what has been reported in the American mass media. Contrary to Netanyahu’s claims, Americans have been led to believe that the reason why the Obama administration ultimately withdrew from its position regarding the settlement freeze, is because despite everything that was offered to the Israelis on an American gold platter, Mr. Netanyahu and the Israeli government would not yield to this condition. Thus, it was pointless to pursue it further.
So, who is telling the truth? Did Obama really back down due to the heavy criticism that he was offering so much to Israel in order to obtain the short settlement freeze, while getting so little in return? Or is the truth of the matter that Netanyahu’s government never did accept the settlement freeze proposal? Obviously, those of us who are outside of the loop will never know the truth.
Of course, being the conservative hawk that he is, Mr. Netanyahu couldn’t leave it at that. Thus, he also took opportunity to deflect criticism from himself, by once again pointing the finger at Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian government, and blaming them for failure of the peace process to move forward. According to Haaretz, Netanyahu stated “During the cabinet meeting on Sunday, I called on Abu Mazen [Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas], to hold direct negotiations, but I got no answer . . . We took many actions in order to move the peace process forward but the Palestinians did not even advance one millimeter despite the settlement freeze. The Palestinians entered talks only toward the end of the freeze and the only subject they wanted to discuss was an extension of the freeze.”
These latter statements by Mr. Netanyahu left me even more dumbfounded. He received no answer from the Palestinians? Well, what in the world did Netanyahu expect would happen if he didn’t stop all settlement construction and expansion, including in East Jerusalem? To continue with the settlements is like slapping the Palestinians in the face, while at the same time saying “I want to make peace with you”. Is it any wonder then that the Palestinians have refused to continue negotiations until the settlement issue is resolved? I can’t say that I blame them one single bit.
Years ago I stated that as long as Ariel Sharon and Yasser Arafat were in power, there would be no peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Similarly, when Benjamin Netanyahu acquired his first term as Israeli Prime Minister, like many writers, I noted that this was very bad news, and that we would see no peace agreement during that time. When Netanyahu won another term as Prime Minister of Israel, I was quite surprised, as I thought that the Israelis had had enough of him the first time around years ago. Apparently, not so.
So, here we stand years later at pretty much the same point, and not any closer to obtaining peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians. The core issues and problems remain exactly the same, and the inflexibility demonstrated by both sides remains the same. The Jews continue with their successful policy of continuous talk and procrastination with little real progress on the ground, while the Palestinians continue to grow more disillusioned, desperate and angry with each passing year that their dreams and goals are not achieved. They have been waiting for literally decades now, and sooner or later, the pot may once again boil over. So, where will it all end? For possible answers to this important question, I invite you to read some of the articles that are found on our Endtime Prophecy Net website. Man may not have the answers, or know the future, but God most certainly does.
If you would like to read the full news article in Haaretz, please go to the following URL. I cannot guarantee that it will still be operational at the time that you read this commentary.