Remembering Annapolis / The Little That Remains

The Second Lebanon War is only a "distant memory" - the prime minster's wish has been fulfilled. True, the pictures of the kidnapped soldiers are on his desk; but he will neither rest, nor slumber nor sleep until the war intended to free them - is forgotten.

The ink has not yet dried on the recommendations of the Winograd Committee, and Olmert has already announced he does not intend to resign. The courts will not help. He is here, at his "work place" to stay, whatever the conclusions of the committee are. They are of no interest to him.

If I hear once more a demand for an investigation committee, I will scream - I will go crazy. The chapter of investigative committees and probes is over and done with. The concept of responsibility is also six feet under. Who would be crazy enough to avenge it - to avenge us.

They deserve it, the chairman of the committee and its members, for agreeing to serve on a government committee instead of a judicial committee established by law; they have only themselves to blame when noses are thumbed at them and their useless report even before it is release. Did they not understand from the outset whom they were dealing with?

They are not the only ones not to understand yet. Joining them are all those who were amazed at the flowery speech at Annapolis; everyone who heard the wings of history beating at that unnecessary conference; everyone who heard the footfalls of the Messiah, the harbinger of peace. And what verbal language lacked, body language made up for: You can see he means what he says, in his body language, which speaks louder than a thousand languages.

When did this summit take place? Perhaps 20 years ago, perhaps 10. Only a month ago? That cannot be. Don't make us laugh. Don't make us cry. Who still believes that by the end of George Bush's unfortunate term, a peace agreement will be attained and signed? Like dogs returning to their vomit, they will cover themselves with the road map, which contains no road, barely a direction.

It was only last month, and already Annapolis seems so distant, and an agreement more distant than ever: Not one far-flung roadblock has really been removed, and more than 10,000 Palestinians are still in storage in our prisons. Illegal outposts are still standing as in the past, more tranquil and secure than ever, and Haim Ramon has received an order to render them all kosher.

Not only are they not removing settlements, they are not even freezing construction of them. They are continuing to sow wild seeds, not surrendering for an instant the tricks by which lines are expanded, trespassed, every last one crossed. The returnees from Annapolis were welcomed by the construction in Har Homa. And the river of excuses did not dry up, from "municipal boundary" to "state lands" to "natural increase."

The whole world knows that no one has the power to enforce the law on the settlers, and therefore the state is enforcing it only on smokers. There is and will be smoke without fire, like in Pakistan.

Not much remains of the to-do at Annapolis. Negotiations with Syria are a distant vision; the Saudi foreign minister, who did or did not applaud at the excellent speech, went home, and the Saudi peace initiative has gone missing. President Bush will arrive in Israel in about 10 days, everyone will talk about how festive Annapolis was and what beautiful statements were made through officials' body language.

No more investigative committees. Never mind. Anyhow, such committees are only established after failed wars. There has never been a committee to investigate peace. Why do they abort peace agreements while still in the womb? The miscarriage seems so natural.