So Mr. Kerry appears to have drawn a blank in his valiant efforts to kick-start this latest series of would-be Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.
This is not a good sign and it will only make it that much harder for the next attempt to succeed. As the senator has so rightly stated, time is the enemy here and it will not be easy for the situation to absorb yet another failure when matters already stand at such a low ebb. And they seem to have been like this for about as far back as I can remember.
With such lack of achievement almost taken for granted these days, is it possible that everyone has been going about this business entirely the wrong way round?
It may be that a top-down approach is never going to work here. The leadership on both sides have long been too cautious, too unsure about taking what might be called ‘courageous’ steps in the pursuit of peace. Certainly those who have done so in the past have usually paid a very heavy price for their bravery.
So, instead of starting at the mountain top as it were, perhaps a more direct assault on the base of the problem might yield much better results for all of us.
Here the head honchos in either camp become largely isolated from the decision-making process, essentially taken out of the loop, actual determination of the matter now in the hands of all those residing in the region and everyone else across the entire planet. Such a radical transfer of power and responsibility would achieve 100% peace efficiency as a natural consequence. And this could happen well in advance of any mutual agreement on final status, thereby making that possibility almost a done deal in itself.
Now if only Mr. Kerry had put forward this as a backup plan should his original fall through, then I rather think Messrs. Netanyahu, Abbas and a whole lot of others would be so shell-shocked by the proposal that they might agree to anything in order to prevent it. Even to the extent of making a permanent peace between Israelis and Palestinians.
In which case, that $4 billion Mr. Kerry has in his back pocket might still have a part to play in repairing some of the damage caused by events, mistakes and ambitions over the past 65 years.