Netanyahu is right in assuming that the US will resist Palestinian membership in the UN agencies, specially the GA and the ICC. He is also right in thinking that when Palestine gains admission to these agencies (as is bound to happen despite US opposition) the US will fight any anti-Israeli action that Palestine tries to take at the ICC. The US will do all this because of the simple fact that Congress is on the payroll of the Jewish Lobby. What Netanyahu is not taking sufficiently into consideration is that the US will not really enjoy doing any of that, since it entails a heavy payment in US influence in the ME and credibility worldwide. To avoid getting drawn into Israel’s swamps and quick sands, the US has chosen to negotiate a package settlement with the Palestinians. Israel is totally out of the loop in these negotiations and will eventually have to accept the outcome, whatever it is. The first step to agree to a package with the Palestinians is to get Hamas to join the PLO umbrella. The reason is simple. It is not convenient for the US (or any of the Powers) to deal with two warring Palestinian governments; and a peace agreement with the West Bank only, leaving Gaza a breakaway province, is not feasible. Therefore Palestinian unity is a pre-condition of any settlement that the US wants to arrange for the Palestinians. The US seems so far to have succeeded in spearheading a Hamas-PLO convergence; but it does not seem to be moving quickly enough in beating Israel back. So a little tap on Panetta’s shoulder is in order. And it is Panetta who is running the show, not Obama, not Clinton, and not the Jewish pointmen in the State Department. Obama and Clinton are in the loop only slightly more than Netanyahu and Lieberman, and that is a good thing.
Joint Arab List Chairman Ayman Odeh rush to hospital with chest pain (Haaretz)