If Abbas and the Palestinian Authority concede to Netanyahu’s demands that, in exchange for a couple of months freeze on settlement building in the West Bank, the state of Israel be recognised as a ‘Jewish state’ – which, with twenty percent of its population being Arab, it clearly is not – and what with Israel demanding that all new Israelis swear allegiance to the ‘Jewish’ state, Abbas will effectively be abandoning any prospect of there ever being an eventual right of return of Palestinian refugees or having a truly Palestinian state.
Talks thus far have been farcical. Rather than being orientated toward seeking a solution to the problem of creating a viable Palestinian state, all the players involved have been far more intent of using the talks as a means of scoring political brownie points for each of the respective participants agendas.
For President Obama the talks have been used merely to score a few brownie points ahead of the US mid-term elections this coming November. Obama thinks that if he can just prevent the talks from breaking down entirely before the November polls he might just be able to get the Democrats across the line without such a great loss in the House as is so far predicted. For Netanyahu, aware of Obama’s predicament in desperately trying to hold the talks together before the approaching polls, the talks are an opportunity of getting the US to persuade Abbas to concede to Israeli demands. For Abbas, who has no real mandate to govern Palestinians and who knows full well that that there is never going to be a Palestinian state, it is simply a matter of clinging to power which he knows he can only do with US and Israeli support. As a result, Abbas plays a game of apparent willingness to continue talks while Netanyahu gradually eats away at all of the dreams Palestinians have aspired to. Meanwhile, Palestinians are kept divided and those in the Gaza remain completely isolated as Abbas continues to harass and arrest Hamas members in the West Bank.
So far, Netanyahu is in front with more brownie points than the other two put together and if, with Obama’s help, he can get Abbas to concede to recognising Israel as a Jewish state, all dreams of a proper Palestinian state for the future, whether it be the OneState Solution with right of return for refugees or a full-on real sovereign state of Palestine without settlers under Israeli rule and proper borders and without all this ‘land for peace’ nonsense, will be gone forever.