I’m posting a link to what I published at The Times of Israel following two discussions, one that we organized and a second one. In our discussion, the urgency of the situation was emphasized. Here’s some of what I wrote:
[A]ccording to reports in today’s newspapers, we know that Secretary of State John Kerry intends to use the API [Arab Peace Initiative], originally launched at the Arab League Summit Conference in Beirut in 2002, and since ratified many times, including after the Arab Spring broke out, as one of the cornerstones for American policy for promoting progress on the Israeli-Palestinian peace track. …
… I am free only to mention my own contribution to the discussion:
- Contrary to pessimistic assessments about the new Israeli government’s desire to be an active partner in advancing the peace process, in addition to Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and her party, many of the MKs in Yesh Atid have a clear commitment to achieve Israeli-Palestinian peace.
- While we all know that continued settlement expansion undermines the prospects for peace and a two state solution, now is the time to put the cost of the settlements on the Israeli agenda. Yair Lapid based his campaign on the slogan “Where’s the money?” and so far has only answered with challenging the Haredim/ultra-Orthodox extortion of government funds. … The time is ripe to emphasize the cost of the settlements, and the way in which they are an obstacle to peace, security and continued prosperity for the average Israeli.
- And finally, if the State of Israel is the focal point for the Jewish right to national self-determination, just as the future Palestinian state will be the focal point for the Palestinian right to national self-determination, then the liberal Jews around the world have the right and even duty to speak out about the future direction of the country, along the lines of the appeal by internationally renowned Tel Aviv University Prof. Daniel Bar-Tal, “If you Care about Israel, Silence is no Longer an Option!”
Click on the following link for my entire piece: Israelis and Palestinians to Obama. Chag Sameach,