On January 15th, representatives from 70 different countries will gather in Paris, France for an unprecedented global conference. The stated goal of this conference is to promote a "two-state solution" as the way that lasting peace will be brought to the Middle East. In Israel, there is a tremendous amount of concern that whatever is agreed upon at this conference will immediately be used as the basis for a UN Security Council resolution that would permanently divide the land of Israel and create a Palestinian state. But things would have to move very rapidly in order for that to happen, because Barack Obama's time in the White House comes to an end on January 20th, and Donald Trump has already made it exceedingly clear that he would never support such a resolution.
The UN Security Council resolution that was passed on Friday was one of the most significant events that we have witnessed in decades. Resolution 2334 made all Israeli settlements in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem illegal, it set the 1967 ceasefire lines as the border between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and it granted every single inch of East Jerusalem to the Palestinians. But it stopped short of giving official UN Security Council recognition to a Palestinian state, and that is why this conference on January 15th is so important.