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No Help from Washington

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By Nicola Nasser*

Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) officials in the government of Mohamed Abbas often complain they spend more time negotiating with American rather than Israeli governments. This has been particularly true of late. Since Israel's all-out assault on Gaza nearly a year and half ago, Palestinian officials have discontinued all direct talks with the Israelis and have been talking to the Americans. US presidential envoy George Mitchell has been closely engaged in the region since May 2010, but his efforts have not proved fruitful.

The Palestinians have had no more luck with the Americans than with the Israelis. They have been consistently asked to accept US-Israeli peace terms that spell disaster and capitulation. Apart from exhausting the Palestinians, and making them edge closer to further concessions, nothing of substance has emerged from talks with either the Americans or the Israelis.

The Americans have sold the Palestinians false hopes, giving Israel the time it needed to grab land and change the demographics of their state-to-be. Now, even the fig leaf of good intentions has fallen.

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*Nicola Nasser is a veteran Arab journalist in Kuwait, Jordan, UAE and Palestine. He is based in Ramallah, West Bank of the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories.
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