Netanyahu Spurns Peace - by Stephen Lendman
Calling for Palestinian capitulation, not peace and liberation, Netanyahu delivered a litany of lies, fabrications, misstatements, and half-truths to AIPAC members on May 23, saying:
-- "Israel is unjustly accused of not wanting peace with the Palestinians. Nothing could be further from the truth." In fact, he once called the peace process "a waste of time," governing accordingly to avoid it.
-- Peace "can only come through....mutual trust," he said, adding that he envisions "peace in which a demilitarized Palestinian state recognizes the Jewish state." In fact, they're preconditions solely for them, no other states with which Israel has diplomatic relations, including peace treaty terms with Egypt and Jordan.
-- "Israel stands ready to make compromises necessary for peace." In fact, Israel never had a peace camp. For decades, efforts were stillborn, obstructing it, perpetuating conflict, and denying Palestinians a sovereign independent state or a viable one-state solution for all its people.
-- "(O)ne thing I will never compromise is our security."
In fact, claimed existential "security" threats are bogus, a red herring, mischaracterizing Israel as vulnerable, surrounded by hostile Arab states. Nuclear armed, it's a regional superpower, unthreatened since the 1973 Yom Kippur War.
Addressing Congress on May 24, he repeated the same canards, including saying he's ready to "make painful compromises (for) peace," while remaining obstructionist against it, a viable Palestinian state, Jerusalem as its capital, Hamas/Fatah unity, and the inviolable right of return.
In response, New York Times writers Helene Cooper and Ethan Bronner headlined, "Netanyahu Gives No Ground in Congress Speech," saying:
"....Palestinians will not get a right of return to Israel.... Jerusalem will never again be divided," and Israel's 1967 borders aren't defensible. New ones must incorporate expanding settlements, an IDF presence along the Jordan River, and Palestinians confined to isolated cantons in ghetto communities or worthless scrubland, an offer no responsible leader will accept.
Moreover, he demanded abandonment of Palestinian unity as a precondition for negotiations, saying Hamas rejects Israel's right to exist. In fact, it accepts it in return for a viable Palestinian state within 1967 borders, 22% of historic Palestine, a major concession Israel rejects, wanting all valued parts of Judea and Samaria.
No matter. Congress treated him like visiting royalty, Cooper and Bronner saying he got "so many standing ovations that at times it appeared that the lawmakers were listening to his speech standing up."
Rejecting Netanyahu's Obstructionism
In response, Mahmoud Abbas said he offered "nothing we can build on." In fact, he "traveled far from peace," subverting it by dictating terms, remaining obstructionist like all Israeli leaders.
A May 25 Haaretz editorial was just as harsh, headling "Netanyahu wasted his chance to present a vision for peace," saying:
Instead of new ideas, a constructive vision, and genuine willingness to negotiate equitably, "we were witness to the same old messages," dictating terms, offering nothing substantive in return.