Abbas refused to resume direct talks with Israel because he insisted that Israel freeze building not only in the West Bank but also in East Jerusalem. Netanyahu only agreed to stop building in the West Bank (for 10 months, not to be extended), but is developing East Jerusalem. The freeze was mandated by the Bush "roadmap" which both Israel and the PA accepted. Today, after the new provocation of Netanyahu, lisying the Cave of the Partiarchs and Rachel's Grave on the Israeli National Historic Sites (even though they are not in Israeli territory), perhaps Abbas will also insist on getting satisfaction on this issue. In any case, and even with the coming US congressional elections, I don't see a problem for Obama to state that what Netanyahu does is against the language and spirit of the "roadmap". He can spell it out, and the US Jews will see that Netanyahu's position lacks any sense. I imagine the Jews will call on Netanyahu to mend his ways, and not hold this against Obama.
Afghanistan examining claim Taliban leader Mullah Omar died (AP)
from the article: Secret Israeli report: U.S. cozying up to Palestinians