Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Israel Dangles Carrots to Minimize Blowback

Outgoing Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert dangled the carrot of a Palestinian state. He noted an agreement could be reached soon. Olmert also stated the U.S. had not tied Israel's hand on military intervention in Iran or Gaza.

"In principle there is nothing to prevent us from reaching an agreement on the core issues in the near future," Olmert said during a briefing with Israeli reporters. "I believe it is possible. I believe it is timely. A declaration is needed. I am ready to make it. I hope the other side is."

He also stressed the US had not tied Israel's hands when it came to military operations in the waning days of the Bush administration, despite media reports to the contrary.

"I don't remember that anyone in the administration, including the last couple of days, advised me or any of my official representatives not to take any action which we will deem necessary for the fundamental security of Israel, and that includes Iran," he said.

Israel has no government in place to approve Olmert's vision, should he act quickly. Rest assured, his promises are intended to keep recalcitrant Arabs and Palestinians in line, should Israel launch a preemptive military strike.