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The Middle East Peace Process
WH Admits Failure in Peace Process

According to White House officials, President Obama has resigned himself to the fact that there will be no peace agreement between Israel and Palestine before he leaves office. From the Washington Post:

They said that the administration has become “realistic” that there might not even be negotiations between Israeli and Palestinian officials before Obama leaves office. In September, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said his government would no longer consider itself bound by the Oslo peace agreements in effect for two decades, charging that Israel had failed to live up to its obligations.

Rob Malley, the National Security Council’s senior director for the Middle East, said that for the first time in two decades, an American administration “faces the reality” that a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict “is not in the cards for the remainder” of a presidency. That, he said, has “led to a reassessment not only of what we can do but of what the parties can do.”

We’re not surprised by Obama’s failure to end the impasse, and we have our criticisms of his approach. But we certainly wish he’d had more success. Dennis Ross, formerly an advisor to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, had a front-row view of the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations led by the Obama Administration. To understand why President Obama once had high hopes for meaningful progress on this perennially difficult problem, you should read his essay.

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  • Fat_Man

    That which was known at all times by the most casual observer, intrudes itself on Captain Oblivious after 7 years. Bunch of geniuses, say what?

  • Re

    I wish you were more critical of Putin since this Russian plane crashed because of terrorists, showing he made a mistake in Syria, as Oama said at the UN. But I guess that doesn’t fit your narrative of the strongman being a chessmaster. Ouch!

    • Dale Fayda

      Whatever the end results of Putin’s actions may turn out to be, he and his allies (Iran, Assad) are fighting to win. They don’t give snarky, condescending speeches about “the arc of history”, draw “red lines”, ask their respective parliaments for “unbelievably small military strikes” or cal upon “the international community” for action. They just act, ruthlessly and decisively. They may very well end up failing, but it won’t be because they thought they were the “the halters of the tides and the healers of the planet”, like our useless boy-king.

      Everything Obama has done and will do in the Middle east is just for show – there is no intent to impose his plan on the events, because there is no plan, just a “narrative” about Obama, his “brilliance” and his “legacy”.

      Other players in the Middle East act – Obama talks. When he thinks the polls warrant it, he makes a Potemkin-esque attempt at action, but it’s just for domestic consumption, to give some fodder to his fellow travelers in the MSM. But overall, he’s just running out the string and hoping the defecation doesn’t hit the oscillation before he leaves office.

      • Kevin

        Good lord thank you for the wonderful word salad. At least you made paragraph like spaces, or something resembling them, so we don’t go cross eyed trying read this tripe.

        you seem to be recommending an invasion of Syria? Or an air campaign against Assad? But it has to be bold right? And bloody, tough minded! Something like what Bush and Cheney were doing? Can you describe what he should have done instead of arming the opposition and keeping American troops from another war in the Middle East (and easy peasy occupation)? Personally I would have liked to see a no fly zone early on to protect civilians (but I’m not CIC and don’t know what he knows).

        Finally if you’re a regular reader here you would recognize how consequential American Inaction is in the Middle East. In this case the US has largely stayed out and now Iran, hezbullah and Russia are spending blood and treasure to prop up another dictator and earning the hatred of virtually the entire Sunni Muslim population in the process. If you believe Putin’s intervention will redound to Assad and Russia’s benefit long term, well we’ll just have to agree to disagree.

        • Ellen

          You are right that Putin and Qassem Soleimani are getting sucked into a losing hand, over the long run. Even over the short run, Iranian casualties are mounting and there are reports that some of the Revolutionary Guard officers are refusing to fight in Syria. This war of attrition has decimated the Alawite population in Syria, from which it may never recover. It is now taking its toll on the Iranians and Hezbollah Shiites.

          This will definitely not end well for the Persian and Russian wannabe empires. Nonetheless, Obama’s America comes out as a loser too, because America’s prestige and reliability are now ruined for years to come. Hillary Clinton or even a Republican will not be able to undo the damage Obama (and 12 year old Kerry) have done.

          Foreign governments will not be able to rely on any treaty or guarantee a US president makes in the future, because the US electorate could easily vote into power another Obama who would essentially nullify the guarantees. This could be done either by inaction, or by outsourcing American action to other allies (“leading from behind”) in a way that effectively makes the intervention a failure. That is why Putin’s star is rising in the Middle East regardless of whether he loses in Syria. The point is, he is a trustworthy ally, who goes to the mat for his client states.

          • Kevin

            I guess I would ask what treaty Obama has broken or how our allies are relying on us any less since Obama entered office? The ‘red line’ issue around chemical weapons was dumb to say on Obama’s part but it ended with most of the stockpile being removed or destroyed. I’d like to know what, specifically, lasting damage has been done by Obama?

            Kerry is a 12 year old (is that an insult?) in what way? What outcome could have been negotiated better if say, Putin, were the US dictator? Which is what many of the commenters here appear to want.

          • azt24

            Have you taken note of how many trips Israeli officials have taken to Moscow lately, how after a 40 year absence Russia is a military player in the Mideast again today? Have you seen that the Saudis are sending their own troops into the field, that Iraq has become a client state of Iran, which is a threshold nuclear power? That is the result of the Great Void that is American Mideast policy under Obama.

            How do our allies rely less on us now? In every way.

          • Re

            Israel trying to be closer to Moscow started many years ago, it has nothing to do with the US; it is the will to have more partners, not to be dependent on one ally, and 20% of the Israeli have Russian/Soviet roots, it just makes sense, you can’t ask the Israeli to just be friends with the US! As for the Saudis it is merely a result of their diminishing sway on the US given the US shale boom changed everything, they know they can’t force the US to do whatever they want now, it is not a bad thing at all!

          • Re

            The US will be just fine, look at how the US is standing up to China in Asia! And US allies are quite happy about it,because don’t be mistaken : China is the real adversary here, Russia is a declining economic power that tries to overcompensate by playing tough.

        • Dale Fayda

          Syrian and Libyan refugees are streaming into Europe by the millions and the EUniks are powerless to stop them. This is a DIRECT result of their and Obama’s inaction and unwillingness to get their hands dirty by intervening in the Syrian crisis decisively in its early stages. Hundreds of thousands of these refugees are heading to the US, with no end to this flood in sight.

          What do you think the consequences of this flood of Islamism will be for that continent? Seriously, I’d like to know what you think will happen to Western Europe with the addition of untold millions of desperate, radicalized Muslims? Will they become law-abiding, tolerant and productive citizens of their new countries (pause for hysterical laughter…) or will it mean the end of Western European civilization as we know it?

          I don’t claim to know how the Russian intervention in Syria will pan out, but I know for a stone-cold fact that Putin has just saved Assad from almost certain defeat in the immediate future and probably for quite a while. The wholesale slaughter of Alawites by ISIS, et al will have to be postponed at least for a couple of years

          Russia doesn’t give a rat’s puckered ass about the hatred of the entire Sunni Muslim population. In case you missed it, dingus, they’re been fighting these said Sunni Muslims in Chechnya and Dagestan for over (20) years with exemplary brutality and most of the Sunni world just yawned. Furthermore, Russia has been in pretty much continuous conflict with Sunni Muslims for almost (1,000) years now – The Golden Horde, khanates of Kazan, Astrakhan, Crimea, Sibir, Kazakh, Bashkir and Uzbek hordes, Imamate of the Caucasus, the Ottoman Empire, recent Chechen, Dagestani and Ingush separatists – just to name better known ones.

          And what if ISIS/Al-Nusra/Al-Qaeda win in Syria and consolidate their position there and in Iraq for the duration? Better or worse for the US, do you think? You may not be interested in fighting them, but they sure as Obama is a panty waste are interested in fighting you and they WILL. Islam is at war with Western Civilization and all of your pseudo-intellectual preening and caterwauling about “American Inaction” won’t change this fact. Sooner rather than later, US and EUniks will have to deal with this reality head on – it won’t go away by itself.

          And more to the point of my initial comment, Obama is not “inactive” in Syria – he’s disastrously INEFFECTIVE in Syria. Telling the world that “Assad must go” – Obama, drawing and then erasing a mythical “red line” – Obama, calling for an “unbelievably small military strike” and then hiding behind a congressional resolution – Obama, allowing Putin to roll him on Assad’s chemical weapons arsenal – Obama. Here Putin and Assad pulled off a spectacular feat of eliminating any chance of Obama moving against Assad, contrived of a way of get rid of Assad’s unwanted and degraded portion of his chemical weaponry and they did it all with Obama’s money!!! Priceless! Kinda, sorta supplying Assad’s enemies (Kurds, FSA) with just enough equipment not to fold, but not with enough to win, thereby protracting the bloodshed – Obama, spending hundreds of millions in a half-assed attempt to train a non-existent force to fight ISIS, but not Assad (?) – Obama, a failed air campaign against ISIS, during which it actually gained territory – Obama, sending in (50) Special Forces trainers into Syria, but continuing to blatantly lie about “no boots on the ground” – Obama.

          It’s not that our man-child Obama, the “most intelligent man ever to hold the office”, the Nobel Prize winner, “Captain Transparency” has been inactive in Syria, but rather that he has FAILED in his actions in Syria because he doesn’t have a plan, has never had a plan and will never have a plan of action which would accomplish anything of consequence. Why not, you ask? Because he doesn’t know what to do, hasn’t got the cojones to do anything serious and doesn’t really want to. When it comes to Syria and Iraq, he’s curled up into the fetal position in the corner and is just hoping that the kicking won’t be too severe to damage his “legacy”.

          • Re

            “Syrian and Libyan refugees are streaming into Europe by the millions and
            the EUniks are powerless to stop them. This is a DIRECT result of
            their and Obama’s inaction and unwillingness to get their hands dirty by
            intervening in the Syrian crisis decisively in its early stages”

            No, if they had intervened these refugees would still come, come on, seriously!

            “Hundreds of thousands of these refugees are heading to the US, with no end to this flood in sight.

            No, for the next 2 years it is expected the US to welcome at least 20,000 Syria refugees, in a country welcoming more than 1 million immigrants a year it is barely a scratch…

          • Re

            “Seriously, I’d like to know what you think will happen to Western Europe
            with the addition of untold millions of desperate, radicalized Muslims?”

            How do you know these refugees are radicalized? Syria was one of the most tolerant Muslim countries before the war and so many Islamists in Syria now are not even Syrians.

          • Dale Fayda

            “How do you know these refugees are radicalized? Syria was one of the most tolerant Muslim countries before the war…” Yeah, right. And the Pope is Jewish too.

            These millions are fleeing their county with just the clothes on their backs as a result of a SECTARIAN civil war. Many of them have taken part in the fighting at some point. I’ll bet that virtually all of them have lost friends and family members in this conflict. Yes, I’m sure that these folks are just itching to integrate happily into European social democracy, although that hasn’t happened with Muslin immigrants anywhere in Europe EVER. Look at the thousands of “tolerant” European-born Muslims leaving everything behind to join ISIS, et all, rioting, burning and attacking Jews all over the continent. But you’re telling me that this wave is different? Are you for real?

            I’ll also bet you dollars to donuts that there are dozens, if not hundreds of ISIS and Al-Qaeda agents mixed in with those millions of welfare seekers.

            Radicalized or not, there isn’t even anecdotal evidence of any place in Europe (or in the whole world, for that matter) becoming better, i.e. more prosperous, safer, more efficiently governed, cleaner by sticking a bunch of Muslims in it. None. Wherever they go in large numbers in Europe, Muslims bring poverty, dependency, ignorance, corruption, crime and religious strife. I dare you to prove me wrong.

        • azt24

          Iran and Russia are ascendant in the Middle East as people who mean business. Whether they win or lose, they will be regarded as serious players. The willingness to expend money, to fight and take casualties is merely the ante in that particular poker game.

          Obama is the guy who wants to win the pot by standing by the side of the table and just kibbitzing. The world doesn’t work like that.

          • Re

            No, that just mean they’ll be hated by the Sunni Muslims and these ones won’t want to buy their weapons, so it’s the opposite : this stance is anti-business. Worse : if Putin loses, and that seems to go in that direction for now, he will lose even more prestige, and Russia with him. While Obama made too many mistakes he was right about that : Putin and Russia could end in a quagmire that will harm them in many ways…

      • Re

        Russia won’t benefit f’rom it, in any way, at best they’ll keep their base in Tartus..Is that worth Russian blood and billions of dollars? I seriously doubt it, Putin doesn’t have a plan, he didn’t even imagine terrorists would attack Russian citizens to fire back…And he probably destroyed the Egyptian economy in the process!

        • Dale Fayda

          Well, you be sure to mention this to Putin at the next Russian cabinet meeting, OK? In the mean time, he’s DOING IT!

          Do you not see the difference between “talking” and “doing”?

          • Re

            No, I just see the difference between a success and a failure. History is written by the winners, if Putin loses History won’t remember him as someone acting, but like someone who lost, that’s all History remembers. What could Obama do in Syria, seriously? This country’s civil war is a real mess, there is no real solution to this conflict, apart from dividing it in 3 parts : Alawite, Sunni and Kurds.

          • Re

            But still, having Russia suffering a defeat in Syria would be a good thing, Putin needs a lesson and if the country weakens even more it won’t recover from it, after that we’ll be able to focus on China.

  • Ellen

    Thanks Dale and Fat Man for fitting comments. The best comments of all were by Ran Baratz, Netanyahu’s new media advisor, who hasn’t been in politics long enough to learn the art of lying. He wrote on his Facebook page that Obama is a classic Western liberal anti-Semite, excusing Muslim bigots of their attitudes while holding Israel to standards no one else lives up to. He also pointed out what any discerning individual with a 9th grade or greater education would know, and that is that John Kerry has the intellectual acuity of a 12 year old.

    That tells you all you need to know about why Obama’s policies in the MidEast have failed, including his attempt to promote the misnamed “peace process.”

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  • FriendlyGoat

    The responsibility for Israeli/Palestinian relations is not now and has never been a White House matter. It has always been an Islam matter. There is no president that makes Islam not be Islam. The current president has tried to soothe it—–cajole it—-to no avail. A right wing president will try as always to threaten it, which (in case no one has noticed) does not work either. The main thing which might (might) cause progress would be Islam becoming soooo ridiculous (ISIL) that Israel starts looking better and better to parts of Islam.

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    Obama and his delusional Leftist Politics has seriously damaged America’s position in the world, as well as America’s economy. Obama is the worst President in American History, as I can’t think of a single successful policy foreign or domestic, everything’s worse.

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