'Netanyahu is key reason that peace deal not reached'

Bill Clinton quoted as saying during roundtable with bloggers that Sharon's peace efforts were scuttled when Likud party returned to power.

By JPOST.COM STAFF,
September 23, 2011 10:35
2 minute read.
Bill Clinton giving a speech in US

Bill Clinton giving a speech 311. (photo credit: REUTERS/Jason Cohn)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Former US president Bill Clinton on Thursday lashed out at Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and said that his rise to power represents a key reason there has been no Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, according to Foreign Policy magazine.

During a roundtable with bloggers on the sidelines of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York, Clinton recounted how the Middle East peace process deteriorated since he pressed both parties to agree to a final settlement at Camp David in 2000, the report said.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


RELATED:
PA to US: Veto at UN would 'destroy' two-state solution
Barak meets Fayyad in attempt to prevent UN statehood bid


According to the magazine, the former US president said the reluctance of the Netanyahu government to accept the terms of the Camp David deal was a main reason for the lack of a comprehensive peace today.

“The two great tragedies in modern Middle Eastern politics, which make you wonder if God wants Middle East peace or not, were [former prime minister Yitzhak] Rabin’s assassination and [former prime minister Ariel] Sharon’s stroke,” Clinton said, Foreign Policy reported.

Clinton said that Sharon was working toward a consensus for a peace deal before he fell ill, but that effort was scuttled when the Likud party returned to power.

“The Israelis always wanted two things that once it turned out they had, it didn’t seem so appealing to Mr. Netanyahu. They wanted to believe they had a partner for peace in a Palestinian government, and there’s no question – and the Netanyahu government has said – that this is the finest Palestinian government they’ve ever had in the West Bank,” Clinton said.



The former US president attacked Netanyahu’s government and said it had received all of the assurances previous Israeli governments said they desired, but now won’t accept those terms to make peace.

“Now that they have those things, they don’t seem so important to this current Israeli government, partly because it’s a different country,” Clinton was quoted as saying. “In the interim, you’ve had all these immigrants coming in from the former Soviet Union, and they have no history in Israel proper, so the traditional claims of the Palestinians have less weight with them.”

Likud faction chairman Ze’ev Elkin responded to Clinton’s comments on Friday, saying that “it’s unfortunate that former American president Bill Clinton did not learn from his own mistakes.”

“Clinton and [former prime minister] Ehud Barak’s bizarre vision of peace and a return to ’67 borders with a divided Jerusalem – including giving up parts of the Old City – dragged the State of Israel and the Palestinians into the second intifada and cost hundreds and thousands of victims on both sides,” Elkin explained.

He added: “As a Russian Jew and a religious settler at the same time, I am proud to be counted among those in Israeli society who are trying to prevent all of us for paying this price a second time.”

“The former president of the US, the stronghold of democracy in the modern world, should have learned by now to respect democratic decisions in other countries,” Elkin said.

Related Content

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
August 31, 2014
Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN