by Stephen Lendman
They're verboten. They're off the table. They always were. They are now. Upcoming peace process pretense masks reality.
Initiatives were stillborn from inception. They remain so. Palestinians genuinely want peace. Israel categorically denies them.
Issues mattering most remain unresolved. Upcoming talks exclude them. Israel wants unconditional surrender. Don't bet against it. It happened many times before.
Dark side justice awaits. This time's no different. Israelis are as out of touch as Americans. Netanyahu's Israel's worst ever prime minister.
He mocks democratic values. He spurns justice. He deplores peace. He's a war criminal. Fake talks boosted his popularity.
According to this week's Haaretz-Dialog poll, 56% of Israelis think he's best suited as prime minister. Labor's Shelly Yacimovich ranked next with 15%.
Yesh Atid's Yair Lapid scored "an embarrassing 7%." He boasts about becoming prime minister in next general elections. Why Israelis support Netanyahu they'll have to explain.
Why they elected the most extremist government in Israeli history matters most. They made their bed. They have to sleep in it. Perhaps they'll have second thoughts. Not so far.
Most Israelis support peace talks. Imagine what awaits Palestinians. Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz and likeminded hardliners explained:
• "no prisoners will be released before negotiations;" many Palestinians demand are excluded;
• no settlement construction freeze;
• no talks based on pre-1967 borders;
• no end of militarized occupation harshness;
• no end of land theft;
• no right of return;
• no East Jerusalem as Palestine's capital;
• no change in Israel's exclusive control of air, water and resource rights.
• nothing Palestinians want most discussed.
Talks are orchestrated to fail. Nothing suggests otherwise. Intelligence/International Relations/Strategic Affairs Minister Yuval Steinitz reflects Netanyahu's views.
He said Jerusalem remains Israel's exclusive capital. Palestinians must recognize Israel as a Jewish democratic state. Israel doesn't accept a two-state solution. Not now. Not yet. Lots more land remains to be stolen.
According to 972mag.com's Larry Derfner, "Barring a miracle, Kerry's breakthrough is bad news."
"If Netanyahu doesn't agree to negotiate on the basis of the 1967 border, the Palestinians' consent to negotiate with him will amount to surrender - which, until he proves differently, is what Bibi wants."
He wants lots more. Washington's on board. Derfner "do(esn't) believe in miracles." They only happen is bad film plots.
According to 972.com's Noam Sheizaf:
"For the first time since the 1991 Madrid Conference, the starting point for the negotiations are the positions of the Israeli right."
PA officials are beholden to Israel and Washington. Abbas is a convenient satrap. He says one thing. He does another.
He does what he's told. He betrays his own people in the process. Why they put up with him they'll have to explain.
Molad: The Center for Renewal of Israeli Democracy headlined "Speaking Peace: Why the Left Must Oppose Negotiation Renewal," saying:
"For the last twenty years, the Israeli Left has reflexively supported direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians."
"This was always considered the preferred route, or perhaps the only route, that would put an end to the conflict."
"Time after time and without exception, the Left camp has legitimized a Right-led peace process in the eyes of the Israeli public and the international community without considering the earnestness of right-wing leaders and the destructive consequences that come with a failed process."
"When it comes to negotiations, the Left has repeatedly aided and abetted the Right." It cheerleads failure. It does so disgracefully.
Netanyahu and complicit hardliners spurn "a two state solution based on the 1967 lines."
"It is instead interested in stalling tactics that would allow the establishment of facts on the ground ('creeping annexation') and simultaneously reduce international pressure."
"Negotiations cannot succeed when one of the sides want them to fail."
"Failed negotiations are potentially dangerous and can cause real harm and it would be a mistake, both on a political and policy level, to again fall in step."
Upcoming talks assure all sticks, no carrots. They've always been this way. They're prologue to tragedy and travesty. It's certain. This time's no different.
On July 26, Mondoweiss contributor Alex Kane headlined "John Kerry's peace process: Dead on arrival," saying:
"â€¦.Netanyahu's government has already made it crystal clear that the peace process is going nowhere fast."
Count the ways. Settlement construction continues unabated. Tenders for 1,000 new housing units were announced. Others will follow.
Jerusalem won't be divided. Diaspora Palestinians can't return. Israel maintains total control of borders, air, water and resource rights.
Status quo harshness remains. Militarized occupation assures it. Peace for our time believers are sleepwalking.
When all sides meet in Washington, "expect (lots) of handshakes and photo-opsâ€¦What you (won't get are legitimate) peace talksâ€¦"
Netanyahu, complicit hardliners, Kerry, and other Obama officials spurn them. They're "not in the cards."
A Final Comment
On July 26, Haaretz headlined "Israel bars European aid staff from entering Gaza, Western diplomat says."
Around 1.7 million Palestinians live there. They're besieged. Their rights are spurned. They're excluded from talks. They're denied vital aid.
"On Thursday, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon ordered defense officials to halt cooperation on the ground with EU representatives."
West Bank infrastructure projects are included. Ya'alon reportedly plans to make it harder "for EU officials to pass through Erez Crossing" to Gaza "or back to Israel."
He and Netanyahu agreed. Following new EU guidelines, they're playing hardball. According to Maan News:
Israel's "giving the EU 'the cold shoulder' in the West Bank" and Gaza. Ya'alon froze contracts. "It's inconceivable the EU acts the way it does and we would just accept it," he said.
EU/Israeli meetings were cancelled. Projects, funding, and permit requests are frozen. What follows remains to be seen. For sure expect nothing positive.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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