Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas indicated in his meeting with US envoy George Mitchell that he has a problem with Israel behaving like a democracy when it comes to the land-for-peace process.
Details of the meeting provided over the weekend to Ha'aretz revealed that Abbas pressed Mitchell to in turn press Israel to honor the offers former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had made to the Palestinians.
That Israel has since had a democratic election and chosen a leader who ran on a platform of not surrendering so much to the Palestinians should make no difference, Abbas suggested. "The points agreed upon with Olmert are agreements with the government of Israel," the Palestinian leader said.
While Abbas did tentatively accept Olmert's offer to surrender all but about six percent of Judea and Samaria and some Israeli territory to make up the difference, as well as divide Jerusalem, the Palestinian leader at the time did not openly agree to the proposal, since Olmert also wanted him to shelf his demand that Israel open its borders to millions of so-called "Palestinian refugees."
Abbas' remarks are just the latest in a long series of incidents that make it clear the Arab countries and the Western power-brokers involved in the peace process are not pleased that negotiations are subject to the will of the voting Israeli public. The last few elections in Israel show that the public is only willing to let its leaders go so far in pursuing what increasingly looks to be a phony peace with the Palestinians.
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