Ever since his re-election last year, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has repeatedly said, publicly and privately, that he is ready to make history. If he could just sit down with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas behind closed doors, he would surprise the world.

Many Israelis, including members of the peace camp, thought that perhaps something fundamental had changed, and that with the help of a committed American administration, Netanyahu might be ready to make real progress towards peace. According to his rhetoric, the prime minister seemed to understand the dangers inherent in the status quo, and the fear of Israel becoming a bi-national or semi-apartheid state.

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