Breaking: Nothing is Happening

According to Reuters, and as published at Y-Net:

As Palestinian leaders discussed a possible US-brokered resumption of peace talks on Thursday, the Israeli government denied a shift in its conditions that might help end a three-year stalemate.

President Mahmoud Abbas began briefing fellow PLO leaders in Ramallah on his meetings this week with US Secretary of State John Kerry, who has extended his stay in the region and appears to be hoping for some movement toward talks.

How exciting is that?  Reuters is reporting that the Palestinians are talking to one another about the non-conversation going on with the Jews.  This is very exciting for everyone involved.

A comment by an Israeli official that Israel had agreed to a new wording on future border negotiations was, however, denied by a spokesman for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

 Kerry has given no detail on where he believes the two sides might give ground, though he said after meeting Abbas in Jordan on Wednesday that differences had narrowed “very significantly”.

What can this mean but that Israel is on the verge of an historic peace deal with the Arab leadership and that a conclusion of hostilities is right around the corner.  Arab leaders in Judea and Samaria are discussing the possibility of discussing the possibility of having peace with the Jews and Israel is maintaining that it has not agreed to new wording on future border negotiations.

Well, who could possibly ask for more than that?!

A US State Department official said there were currently no plans to announce a resumption of Israeli, Palestinian talks. “There are currently no plans for an announcement for the resumption of negotiations,” US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters in Amman, where Kerry is on his sixth visit to the region to try to revive peace talks.

Yes, the “peace process” is going just swimmingly.   John Kerry is doing a fine job in discussing with both Israel and the Arabs the possibility of having discussions with both Israel and the Arabs.

Meanwhile Israel, apparently, has no idea what anyone is talking about.

This is truly a breakthrough moment.

During his visit, Kerry has not spelled out his proposals. But his efforts won the notable endorsement of the Arab League, which said they “provide the ground and a suitable environment to start negotiations”.

John Kerry has not “spelled out his proposals” but the Arab League has endorsed his efforts!  This is precisely the kind of thing that just bolsters confidence in the nearly imminent outbreak of potential peace processing.  What this means is that there are people, both Arab and Jewish, in the Holy Land who are considering the possibility of considering the possibility of discussing the possibility of discussing the possibility of not killing one another.

Oh joy!

The Arab League confirmed this week that it was willing to consider swapping some land on either side of the 1967 borders, bringing it closer to the Israeli position. That is that the old borders would leave Israel at too great a risk of attack and that some settlement blocs should be incorporated into Israel.

The Arab League?  Excuse, but don’t they typically refer to this as the “Israel-Palestine conflict”?  I am pretty sure that they do, but now we are to understand that the Arab League is the decision maker on the Arab side?  I thought it was Mahmoud Abbas.  No?  So this is not a conflict between “Palestinians,” both Jewish and Arab, but between the tiny Jewish minority in the Middle East and their centuries-long Arab majority persecutors?  Got it.  We should discuss this thing in those terms because it is clearly closer to reality.

The Palestinian Jews have lived under the imperial and colonial oppression of the vast Arab nation for fourteen centuries and now those Arabs are talking about the possibility of talking about the possibility of having talks.  Speaking strictly for myself, I could not be more excited!

Mahmoud Al-Aloul, an official with Fatah, sounded a pessimistic note to reporters after initial consultations. “With the current formula, matters are not encouraging. But no decision has been made,” he said.

Well, thank G-d that no decision has been made.  We wouldn’t want to rush into peace, after all.  There is a reason that the Long Arab-Muslim War Against the Jewish People in the Middle East continues century after century, despite the fact that the yammering classes in the west seem to have no idea what that reason might be.  Whatever the reason is, it has absolutely nothing to do with Allah or Muhammed or the Koran or the Hadiths.  There may be a reason out there somewhere to explain the never-ending Arab-Muslim genocidal hostility toward the Jews, but whatever that reason is, it has nothing to do with Islam or any religious-political ideology emanating from either Riyadh or Cairo for, lo, these many centuries.

The truly sad thing, in my opinion, is that the Israelis, as usual, remain entirely intransigent.

Netanyahu’s rightist coalition government, which includes pro-settler parties, says it is ready to resume peacemaking immediately and “without preconditions”.

The question is, why does Netanyahu’s rightist coalition government, which includes pro-settler parties, say that it is unready to resume peacemaking immediately and “without preconditions”?  One would think that after fourteen centuries of ongoing harassment and oppression and persecution throughout that part of the world that the Jews of the Middle East would want to resume peacemaking immediately and without preconditions.

Maybe next year… in Jerusalem.


Mike Lumish is the editor of Israel Thrives.

About the Author
Mike Lumish is a PhD in American history from the Pennsylvania State University and has taught at PSU, San Francisco State University, and the City College of San Francisco. He regularly publishes on the Arab-Israel conflict at the Times of Israel and at his own blog, Israel Thrives ( He has in recent years given conference papers on American cultural and intellectual history at The International Society for the History of Behavioral and Social Sciences in Dublin, Ireland, as well as at the Western Historical Association in Phoenix, Arizona and the American Cultural Association in New Orleans, Louisiana. Lumish is also the founding editor of the scholarly on-line discussion forum H-1960s. He can be contacted at