Tom Friedman’s editorial in today’s New York Times has abundant errors.
It seems to be a piece more about Secretary of State John Kerry’s so-called original last-ditch effort to cement an Israeli/Palestinian peace agreement. Kerry’s effort is far from original. There hasn’t been an American government official—be it an ambassador, president, vice-president, secretary of state or any other political pundit or elected official who has not, at one time or another, proposed similar solutions. Freidman claims that “Kerry is daring to test a question that everyone has wanted to avoid…” In Friedman’s words, “Is it five minutes to midnight or five minutes after midnight or even 1AM” which signifies beyond diplomacy?
Everyone involved in trying to come to a mutual conclusion to the conflict has always dealt with the same dilemma when listing concessions from either side. And, those concessions have always focused, among other points, on the continued constructions of Israeli settlements, several Intifadas where both sides have suffered inhumane losses, or simply a division in political thinking in the Knesset (hawks versus doves) or a fight to the death between El Fatah and Hamas who has successfully taken over Gaza. Frankly, any effort to effect any kind of conciliation between the Palestinians and Israelis has always been a last ditch effort that has always ended in failure.