Daniel Levy has published in National Interest a thoughtful and provocative critique of the recent collapsed American effort to seduce the Israelis and Palestinians into temporary negotiations. Like me, Daniel thinks that the administration’s failure is more opportunity than loss — but then weaves together an interesting narrative that the Palestinians are actually moving into a position with greater leverage.
Read the whole piece, but here is a segment:
To have a realistic chance of success, any U.S, leader would simply have to throw that playbook onto the scrap heap. The United States would have to be willing to present its own formula for a breakthrough, front-loading the territorial and border issue (it’s the occupation, stupid), offer inducements and incentives for progress but make them conditional and not rollover in the face of rejection by either side.
America would also need to take a pragmatically inclusive approach to regional and Palestinian realities (Syria and Hamas will need to be part of the equation, even if the latter is via indirect mediation). This not only can, but must be wrapped up together with a package of new security guarantees for Israel and as part of a narrative that articulates why it is not just an Israeli interest but an Israeli necessity. America cannot impose a solution on Israel, but it can dramatically reconfigure the Israeli public and political conversation about the conflict and be the key to unlocking an Israeli political ‘yes.’
— Steve Clemons