By Nicola Nasser*
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas stands now at a crossroads of his people's national struggle for liberation and independence as well as of his political life career, cornered between the rock of his own rejecting constituency and the hard place of his Israeli occupying power and the US sponsors of their bilateral negotiations, which were resumed last July 29, despite his minesweeping concessions and backtracking "on all his redlines."
Unmercifully pressured by both Israeli negotiators and American mediators, the elusive cause of peace stands about to loose in Abbas a brave Palestinian man of peace-making of an historical stature whose demise would squander what could be the last opportunity for the so-called two-state solution.
To continue pressuring Abbas into yielding more concessions without any reciprocal rewards is turning a brave man into an adventurer committing historical and strategic mistakes in the eyes of his people, a trend that if continued would in no time disqualify him of a personal weight that is a prerequisite to make his people accept his "painful" concessions.
The emerging, heavily "pro-Israel" US-proposed framework agreement "appears to ask the Palestinians to accept peace terms that are worse than the Israeli ones they already rejected " that it would all but compel the Palestinians to reject it," Larry Derfner wrote in The National Interest on this February 3.
Abbas "rejects all transitional, partial and temporary solutions," his spokesman Nabil Abu Rdaineh said on last January 5, but that's exactly what the leaks of the blueprint of the "framework agreement" reveal.
Reportedly, the international Quartet on the Middle East, comprising the US, EU, UN and Russia, meeting on the sidelines of the Munich security conference last week, supported US Secretary of State John Kerry's efforts to commit Palestinian and Israeli negotiators to his proposed "framework agreement."
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the presidential compound in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014
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Europe is also tightening the rope around Abbas' neck. If the current US-backed framework agreement talks with Israel fail, Europe will not automatically continue to support the Palestinian Authority, Israel's Walla website reported on last January 29.