October 23, 2015

With Violence Surging in Israel, Washington Retreats From New Diplomatic Push at Turtle Bay

By Ilan Goldenberg

Source: Foreign Policy

Journalist(s) Colum Lynch

Seven months ago, frustrated by what he saw as Israel’s retreat from its commitment to a two-state solution, U.S. President Barack Obama warned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he would “reevaluate” U.S. policy on Israel and the Middle East peace process. Behind the scenes, senior U.S. diplomats hinted to European allies they were prepared, as a pressure tactic, to defy Israel at the United Nations by restarting talks on the creation of a Palestinian state.

But now, even as violence surges in the Middle East, the United States is sticking to its traditional stance that the U.N. should butt out of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Secretary of State John Kerry, meanwhile, is resuming what top American diplomats have done for generations: engage both sides in frequent trips to the region and try to prod Israeli and Palestinian leaders into direct talks for a peace deal that few believe will be achieved anytime soon.

In recent weeks, U.N.-based diplomats and outside observers say Washington has shown little interest in enlisting the U.N. Security Council to press the parties to return to talks that abruptly fell apart in April 2014. The longtime U.S. policy toward the Middle East, they say, has not changed.

Read the full article at Foreign Policy.

  • Ilan Goldenberg

    Senior Fellow and Director, Middle East Security Program

    Ilan Goldenberg is Senior Fellow and Director of the Middle East Security Program at the Center for a New American Security. He is a foreign policy and defense expert with ext...