Jimmy Carter’s May 12 opinion piece in the Washington Post should be cut out, framed and hung on the wall.
Not because it lists all the unilateral steps Israel took during the last round of abortive peace negotiations (the “14,000 new Israeli settlement units…approved, more than 3,000 Palestinians…arrested and 50…killed, provoking troubling examples of Palestinian retaliation, including the deaths of three Israelis”) even as the former president forgets to mention the 78 convicted terrorists Israel released by October, 2013. No, this is, so far, nothing unusual from Carter who, after all, used the word apartheid to describe Israel in his 2006 book.
So, what is so important in Carter’s latest opinion piece that it merits lasting attention?
It’s the former president’s rationale for welcoming the unity deal between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. Carter writes, “This reconciliation of Palestinian factions and formation of a national unity government is necessary because it would be impossible to implement any peace agreement between Israel and just one portion of the Palestinians.”
Let’s remember these words when the unity talks between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas, once again, result in an acrimonious divorce.
Therefore, when pressure is inevitably applied on Israel once more to go back to the negotiating table with the Palestinian Authority after the Palestinian unity government fails, Benjamin Netanyahu should be the first to point to Jimmy Carter’s words: “it would be impossible to implement any peace agreement between Israel and just one portion of the Palestinians.”
Thank you, Mr. Carter, for confirming what most rational people had already known: no comprehensive peace deal with the Palestinians, even in theory, is possible without an agreement to that effect from both the West Bank and Gaza.
And for the foreseeable future, Gaza, with Hamas in charge, will not be interested in living side by side with the “Zionist Entity” that the rest of the world calls Israel be it within or without a Palestinian unity government.
Be it as it may, one thing is clear: the charade will continue.