There might well be a
AS I strode past the US embassy on the Women’s March on London the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration, a thought crystalised — that there might be a silver lining to the cloud of gloom that had descended on the demonstrators.
Counter-intuitively, it just might breathe new life into the moribund search for a two-state solution.
As long as Palestinians believe they can secure a state through international pressure on Israel rather than by direct negotiation, they will not come to the table.
Harsh? Well, to date they have rejected all offers made, most notably the 2000 Camp David proposals which would have given them more than 80 per cent of what they appeared to want.
At the time, then US president Bill Clinton quite rightly put the blame for the failure of the talks squarely on Yasser Arafat’s shoulders. And leftwing Israeli PM Ehud Barak described Arafat’s behaviour as a “performance geared to exact as many Israeli concessions as possible without ever seriously intending to reach a peace settlement or sign an end to the conflict”.
Put another way, it was difficult to ignore the cold and inconvenient truth that the Palestinians did not want Israel on the map.
Seventeen years on, I have little doubt that the Palestinian desire for