"Abbas opted many months ago to pursue UN recognition because he believes that this strategy can strengthen his chances of achieving a state in the West Bank, along something close to the 1967 lines, with a capital in East Jerusalem. In parallel, he has apparently concluded that no Israeli leader--across the political spectrum from Ehud Olmert to Netanyahu--will ever agree with him on the pre-1967 "narrative" issues of the right of return and the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif and additional holy sites. This is his unspoken reason for abandoning negotiations."
"In recent years, this deadlock has been compounded by Israeli archeological digs and development of sites near the Mount and in the City of David, or Silwan. In Palestinian eyes, these projects are geared to uncover and display the remains of biblical Jerusalem at the expense of layer upon layer of non-Hebrew Jerusalem culture, including a millennium and a half of Arab and Muslim civilization. They also threaten to dislodge the current Palestinian Arab residents of Silwan."
"So, the Libya War is unauthorized and has never been funded with a dime by Congress, but Congress does not object to this -- unless perhaps it does....Only it doesn't really. If the House (the Senate is hopeless) objected, it would simply enforce existing laws. The War Powers Resolution -- despite the President's claim that bombing people's houses is not "hostilities" -- is actually crystal clear in comparison with recent Congressional communications. That law has been violated. The House could unambiguously block funding for this illegal war or impeach its architect. Nobody currently believes it will do any more than push the envelope of pretended war opposition, even to the point of confusing people as to what it's up to."
"The international community has three options. Either it can help avoid that discussion by convincing Israel to stop expanding settlements and resume negotiations on two states on the basis of the 1967 borders. Or it can take up its responsibilities in the UN and vote for a resolution adopting the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the borders of 1967 that lives in peace with all its neighbors, including Israel. The alternative, of course, is to let the Palestinian leadership down, which will mean leaving it to the mercy of both the Israeli occupation and the Palestinian opposition--a path that will certainly push this conflict into a completely new phase."
"...lest we forget, Fateh and Hamas did not split because of Israel, and they have not decided to reconcile because of Israel. As with the broader, volatile situation around us in the region, here too we are best advised, at least at this point in time, not to interfere."