Israel’s Foreign Ministry is currently busy trying to persuade the international community not to recognize a unilateral declaration of an independent Palestinian state between the river Jordan and the 1949 Armistice Demarcation (Green) Line.
Such efforts on the part of the Israeli government would perhaps be viewed more sympathetically if they were paralleled by a serious attempt by Prime Minister Netanyahu to get the peace talks back on track.
One can understand his frustration following Mahmoud Abbas’ refusal to negotiate even during the ten month moratorium on building on the West Bank. Nevertheless, Israel cannot afford the luxury of sitting back and allowing the Palestinians to dictate the agenda.
As has been said all too often, time is not on Israel’s side. Holding onto the West Bank will result in the Jews becoming a minority in their own land. Furthermore, Israel faces increasing de-legitimization within the international community while her enemies are developing weapons that threaten her civilian population to a degree that they have never experienced before.
The White House will not save Israel (remember Kissinger?). Neither will Europe. The question is whether Netanyahu’s government is prepared to pay the price that will be required to bring the Palestinians back to the negotiating table. Unfortunately, all the signs are that Israel will be as ineffective in handling this issue as she was in dealing with the fires that devastated so much of the Carmel Forest.
* see Esther 4:14