Saturday, November 20, 2010

From 60 to 90 Is Not A Good Thing

I can't understand Netanyahu.

He is trumpeting the advantages of the new deal with the US but without getting into the really negative aspects, one point: at the end of September, the word was:

The U.S. is proposing that Israel extend a partial West Bank settlement freeze for 60 days.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak has returned to Israel after more than a week in the United States with a package of U.S. ideas that include extending the freeze that expired over the weekend by 60 days, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy’s David Makovsky told POLITICO.

In the subsequent Netanyahu talks, the period rose to 90.  He's not a very good negotiator if the price Obama demands goes up, in an inflationary fashion, rather than down.

And whether or not these supposed guarantees go into writing, well, it seems a very insecure thing:

On Friday, the Obama administration confirmed publicly for the first time its readiness to give Israel written assurances on security issues. Mr. Netanyahu says he needs those guarantees to persuade members of his Cabinet to support the freeze, which is intended to revive peace talks with the Palestinians.

“If there is a need to put certain things in writing, we will be prepared to do that,” said the State Department spokesman, Philip J. Crowley. He declined to discuss the provisions that would be in such a document.


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