"Saeb Erekat, the PLO’s chief negotiator, is quoted promising Israel “the biggest Yerushalayim in history” – using the Hebrew word for Jerusalem – as his team effectively surrendered Palestinian rights enshrined in international law....The concessions did not end there, however. The Palestinians agreed to land swaps to accommodate 70 per cent of the half a million Jewish settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem and to forgo the rights of all but a few thousand Palestinian refugees."
"In reality, Abbas has very few (if any) choices. So despite the talk about alternatives, the best choice he has is to live in Washington and not return phone calls until after the mid-term elections....In the meantime, there is no harm in debating the potential alternatives that Palestinians have if the present process continues to falter after the mid-term elections, and after finding a solution to the settlement obstacle."
"To truly engage in negotiations would either expose the position of the Israeli government as being too distant from the requirements of the international community, or endanger the coalition itself. This Israeli government cannot agree to any of the fundamental steps required to move the peace process forward. It is not mature enough to end the occupation in return for peace--the very heart of what this peace process is about."
"What is especially troubling is the failure of those who are most optimistic about these talks to recognize that the language they use and the framework they have embraced is so thoroughly tone deaf to Palestinian realities and concerns as to be "Pollyannaish", at best, or insulting, at worst. For example, they flippantly toss out terms like "land swaps", "settlement blocks", and "Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem" without any acknowledgment of what they mean to Palestinians or what consequences each has in predetermining realities on the ground."