The High Price of the U.S. Mideast Peace Push – John Bolton
Diplomacy has costs as well as benefits. The obsessive focus on Israeli-Palestinian issues incurs what economists call “opportunity costs” – the lost opportunity to concentrate on other issues of greater importance or where there are better chances for progress. The most immediate costs fall on the Palestinians themselves, used and abused for decades not by Israel, but by Middle Eastern radicals who’ve made “Palestine” the point of their attack against Israel’s very existence.
With attention diverted from repeated failures to create legitimate, representative institutions of governance, Palestinians have been left with a corrupt, ineffective Palestinian Authority, no functioning economy, few useful economic skills, precious little foreign investment and a dependency existence fostered by UN and other relief programs. As a result, there is simply no Palestinian entity that can make and implement the kinds of commitments necessary to sustain a true peace agreement.
For Israel, every hour spent talking to Secretary Kerry about West Bank apartment construction is an hour not spent addressing more serious issues, notably Iran’s nuclear-weapons program, resurgent terrorism and the failure of the Arab Spring. The writer is a former U.S. ambassador to the UN. (New York Post)
(Click on the title to read the whole article….Ed.)