"There is a certain irony in all this. It was pressure on Israel from U.S. President Barack Obama at the beginning of his term as president on a settlement freeze that led Abbas to paint himself into one corner by insisting on a settlement freeze before the start of negotiations.Now, it turns out Abbas has painted himself into another corner over the same settlement construction issue in insisting on going to the UN." And what on earth makes you think that the Palestinians would have dropped the issue without any US pressure on Israel for a settlement freeze? No, the only thing this would have done is make the Palestinians go to the UN sooner.
15 police officers killed in Colombia helicopter crash (Reuters)
from the article: Abbas has shown Israel he is not like Arafat