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Mideast Envoy Jason Greenblatt Looks Back on U.S. Peace Efforts – Omri Nahmias (J. Post via Daily Alert)

By   /   September 16, 2019  /   No Comments

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Sept. 16, 2019

  • In his first interview since announcing his resignation, Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt said he wouldn’t change any of the significant U.S. decisions regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “The decisions we made were appropriate for what we are trying to accomplish. They were correct for the United States and its interest.”
  • “Certainly, on the major decisions – Jerusalem, the embassy, UNRWA, the PLO office, the Golan – I firmly believe [those were] the correct decisions. And I think if we didn’t make those decisions, it would have brought us no closer to peace.”
  • “I don’t characterize anything we’ve done as sticks,” he says regarding the peace team’s approach to the Palestinians. “I think that each decision we’ve made over the last two and a half years has been in the interest of the United States. I know that people characterize some of our decisions as punishments toward the Palestinians. That is not only not true, it never entered into my mind.”
  • “Take the recognition of Jerusalem, for example. That’s a law of the USA from 1995. We respected the will of the American people in a law passed by Congress. The closure of the PLO office was based on a law. On UNRWA, it is not in the interest of the United States to continue funding into that broken system that provides no future for Palestinians living in these refugee camps. I’m surprised how people weaponize these decisions and pretend that they were done for political purposes when, in fact, they were decisions based on either law or what makes sense for the U.S. taxpayer.”
  • Regarding the U.S. peace plan, he said, “If both sides study it and stay away from the political talk and understand that we delivered a realistic plan – one that is actually implementable, not one that just talks in lofty ideals – I think there is a chance that something good could come out of it.”
  • “When we started, everybody would say that this is the core conflict of the Middle East. And if we solve this conflict, all of a sudden the Middle East will be an oasis of peace. That is absolutely untrue. And I think most people now understand that. You will still have the occasional group of people who still make that statement, but nobody believes it.”
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