Dear Friends of Israel
During the state visit of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the U.S. in May, things apparently didn’t go quite the way that he wished. The discord between him and U.S. President Obama could not be overlooked. This was due to Obama's alleged call for Israel to withdraw to its 1967 borders. In fact, that wasn’t actually what President Obama called for Israel to do, but he was very clear that the 1967 border should be the basis for a peace agreement with the Palestinians. The future boundary should be determined by a jointly negotiated exchange of land. Netanyahu tried to prevent that, because it would mean Israel would have to give up territories it has possessed since 1948. Furthermore this would actually mean that only the major settlement blocks, which follow the 1967 border, would remain within the future borders of Israel. All the outlying settlements would come under Palestinian rule. This is unacceptable for many in Netanyahu's Likud-Party, and most of their coalition partners.
Although Netanyahu did not hear what he wanted to hear from Obama, he promised to cooperate with the American president. He gave reassurances that he was ready to make painful sacrifices of land to achieve real peace. Thus it can be clearly seen that the government of Netanyahu cannot withstand the challenges ahead much longer. Calls for a national unity government with the opposition are already being heard. The opposition Kadima-Party saw this development far in advance. Therefore it was not ready to join a government that refused to see the inevitable, real consequences of a negotiated peace with the Palestinians.
In a subsequent visit to London, President Obama called it a mistake for the Palestinians to unilaterally attempt to gain international recognition as a country at the United Nations in September. He said that the Jerusalem and refugee questions are emotional issues that will require both sides to make “wrenching compromises.” Therefore it is better to first negotiate the issues of security and the future borders, instead of all four questions at once.
Thereupon his host, the British Prime Minister David Cameron, said the views of the American president are brave and visionary. Then he assured Israel that Great Britain, as well as the United States, will always stand up for Israel’s right to exist, right to defend herself and right to secure borders. He also assured the Palestinians “that we understand their need for dignity and for a Palestinian state.”
Cameron said further, that with these two points clear, neither side has an excuse to stand aside from the talks. A move by the United Nations won’t create a Palestinian state; that will require a mutually negotiated agreement.
Therefore it is expected that President Obama’s vision will find more favor in the security council than the unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state.
Whether or not President Obama’s vision has any chance depends primarily on Hamas. Hardly anyone would expect Israel to negotiate with a party that is not ready to recognize Israel's right to exist.
Once more we see the great powers of this world drawn into the conflict over Israel. This fact leads us to understand that there is more going on here than just what is visible on the surface. God is fulfilling His plan, as it is revealed in His word.
Yours In Him, who never leaves a word unfulfilled,