Sunday, October 14, 2007

Here Comes C-o-n-d-i

Here are excerpts from Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice's on-flight briefing:-

Briefing En Route Tel Aviv, Israel

October 14, 2007

SECRETARY RICE:...the purpose of this trip is to continue to support advancement of
the two parties on the bilateral track -- I hope to get an update on how their
discussions are going, they've appointed teams, there have been a couple of meetings -- to see what we can do to help advance that track and also to work with the Jordanians and with the Egyptians on supporting the work that the two sides are doing.

...QUESTION: Analysts want to see this like as a statement of the endgame, you know, talking about having the Palestinians go on record and say we'll accept no right of return and the Israelis say, you know, we'll share Jerusalem...

SECRETARY RICE: I do think it's important that they address the core issues in some fashion.

...QUESTION: Do you see a Palestinian state emerging before you leave office?

SECRETARY RICE: All I can do before I leave office is to give 100 percent till I leave office. And we'll see how far we can get. But this President has done a lot over the last five and a half, six years to lay groundwork for a different approach and for a different starting point for the establishment of a Palestinian state, you know, with firm American commitment to the establishment of a state right up front, right up front -- it's going to be a state, it's going to be called Palestine -- leading then to, I think, a readjustment of attitudes in the international Community, most especially in Israel itself, where with Ariel Sharon's Herzliya speech saying we have to divide the land. You got the broadest possible Israeli agreement that a Palestinian state was in Israel's interest. I don't think we've ever been there before...without the establishment of institutions, without the establishment of a viable prospect of an economic future, this state's never going to work. So these all have to work together.

QUESTION: Madame Secretary, did you get an answer from the Israelis about this
confiscation of Palestinian land? [E1?]

SECRETARY RICE: I did. What I'll do is I'd prefer to have the Israelis say precisely what they -- their clarification. But let me put it this way. It was a clarification concerning the timing of such a -- the actual timing that anything would happen, saying that it was not imminent and also that it was to improve Palestinian Mobility. We'll continue to have discussions about this. [how do you like that grammar and syntax]

Briefing? I'm a bit confounded and confused but I am more worried that Ehud Olmert will be more of the same.

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