Richard Silverstein cites Bernard Avishai and Sami Bahour on what has to happen for Annapolis to succeed. There is only one possible settlement out there, and the Americans have to tell both sides – who am I kidding, has to tell Israel – that the one possible deal is the one they are going to accept, or else. Continuing to play the Zionist game of endless mediation and negotiation, while Israel has more time to build more settlements and more walls, is caving in to the Likudniks, again.
We will get a good opportunity to see the bona fides of the American position. If the Americans don’t put an ultimatum to the Israelis, they haven’t got the balls to run an Empire, and American irrelevance will continue to spiral out of control. It has become an international hobby to defy the testicle-less laughing stock called the United States (see, for example, recent defiance by Turkey, the Iraqi government, Pakistan, Venezuela, Syria, Ecuador, and, of course, Iran, all of who laugh at American ‘demands’, knowing the Americans have neither the will nor the ability to enforce their demands, a failure exemplified by the American impotence concerning Israel), and if an Empire can’t follow its clear national interests and tell its most obvious vassal state what to do, Annapolis will be regarded by future historians as the official end of the very short-lived American Empire.
Watch out for the lite Zionists, who are preparing to blame the inevitable failure of Annapolis on lack of Palestinian unity. This is nonsense, of course. If Abbas comes away from Annapolis with an agreement like the one that came out of Taba, the Palestinians will be so pleased with it that Hamas would destroy all its political power if it attempted to undermine it. You can be sure that there won’t be an agreement at Annapolis, but the failure will be Israel’s fault, and probably the fault of the emasculated Americans as well.