Tuesday :: Nov 27, 2007

Cutting Through The Spin

by Steve

Reuters photo

It looks like the Saudis weren’t too impressed with Bush’s “achievement” at getting the Israelis and Palestinians to only meet over the next twelve months to address serious unresolved issues, meetings that Bush will only commit to “monitor.” Neither the New York Times nor the Washington Post’s initial accounts alluded to any discontent, and chose instead to stick to the White House’s script that just the meeting itself was a big deal.

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal, in his remarks to the conference, called for the earliest possible resumption of talks with Lebanon and Syria, which wants the return of the Golan Heights, land seized by Israel during the 1967 war.

"We have come to support the launching of serious and continuing talks between the Palestinians and the Israelis that will address all the core and final status issues," Saud said. "These talks must be followed by the launching of the Syrian and Lebanese tracks at the earliest."

After trying twice in the last five years to get a peace process going while the administration resorted to war, the Saudis aren't too impressed with the lame spectacle they saw today.

Saudi Arabia said it agreed to attend after receiving assurances that the Bush administration would remain energetic after the talks begin. But asked if he would shake hands with Olmert, the kingdom's foreign minister, Prince Saud al-Faisal, gave a curt no.
"We are here for the serious business of making peace," he said. "It is not a sporting contest where you shake hands and let the best man win."

It’s been over five years since the Saudis made their significant proposal, a proposal that was accepted by Hamas. Yet the White House ignored it because they had no intention of pursuing peace when they were actively preparing to invade Iraq. We can all wonder what may have happened if things went differently back in 2002.

The Saudis now see that after all this time, all the Arab states get for their patience is a commitment for a year's worth of meetings between the Israelis and Abbas without the active participation of the United States to achieve concrete objectives. As a result, the Saudis realize that the Bush Administration will have done nothing in eight long years to address Arab concerns, which was the PNAC plan all along.

I’m sure that after this, Bush can count on Saudi cooperation with Iraq, Iran, and oil prices.

Steve :: 2:25 PM :: Comments (19) :: Digg It!