Does Bibi Want Enough 'Reciprocity' to Kill Oslo?

The government acts as if it has no choice.

Ted Belman,

Ted Belman
Ted Belman
Tzipi Livni, speaking for the government, says, "We do not have the option of freezing the situation and waiting for things to change."

Is this because she worries that the situation will deteriorate or because the West won't let us freeze the situation?
We will have to go to war.

"It's not good for us or for the pragmatic Palestinians; when there is a window of opportunity, we must take advantage of it and conduct talks, while at the same time preserving our national assets."

What window? What opportunity? And, I might add, what national assets? She seems to giving them away.

Is there a hint of panic in the air? If Israel doesn't take this opportunity to give Fatah everything it wants, then it will have only Hamas to deal with. So she seems to be saying. I say, better Judea and Samaria without peace than "peace" without Judea and Samaria.

The agreement being negotiated will not satisfy Hamas. The government acts as if it has no choice but to strengthen Fatah to keep Hamas at bay. How can our government put its trust in such a weak reed? Instead, I believe the government is putting its trust in international recognition of the Green Line as our border with the ending of the "occupation." While we may end the occupation, we will be agreeing to many obligations that wed us permanently to the Palestinians.

Then, we will have to go to war.

At least, Livni says for the first time, "If there is any agreement with the Palestinians, it will be brought to the government for its approval, and then to the Knesset for ratification as well."

So, what is Binyamin Netanyahu's response? He wants to get something in return. What, he doesn't say:

"Will we receive the complete nullification of the ‘right of return' [to Israel]? We know that we will not. Will we receive sovereignty over Jerusalem? No, we know that [our government] has ceded this. And it keeps on going - with every Olmert-Abbas meeting, another 100 terrorists are freed, as we heard this morning - and that's when they meet here; when they meet in the US, it's hundreds of terrorists who go free, and we hear that at the summit they're going to be talking about thousands! ...Not to mention the guns that the PA keeps receiving...."

Netanyahu is quite right in this, but what will he insist on in return? Will he insist on keeping Jerusalem or on keeping Ariel and Maaleh Adumin? He doesn't say.

As it is, even with all the concessions our government is making, it is not clear whether a deal can be cut. Rest assured that if Netanyahu gets into power and holds out for a better deal, the peace process will end. Netanyahu must know this. Thus, he favours the status quo, which Livni says is not an option.
Netanyahu believes Israelis aren't ready to abrogate Oslo.

Netanyahu believes Israelis aren't ready to abrogate Oslo, so he carries on with it, but he wants reciprocity. Thus, he wants his cake, Oslo, and he wants to eat it, too, by insisting on a non-negotiable deal.

The new Hatikvah party and the Likud's Moshe Feiglin want to kill Oslo, as do the religious parties.

According to Yechiel Leiter, who served as Binyamin Netanyahu's chief of staff in the Finance Ministry, "The Likud party, which is apparently going to win the next elections and lead the State of Israel, must declare at this point already that it is not obligated by, and would not honor, any agreement to be signed by Olmert and Abbas."

This is a must.

My take is that Netanyahu's status quo position will get him into power in a coalition with the nationalist Right. Hatikvah, the new non-sectarian nationalist party, will start the debate on abrogating Oslo and the new government will continue it.