Very interesting developments, if you care about inside baseball and gossip--but Haaretz prints a rare, anonymous rebuke from within the Netanyahu government about the diplomatic damage caused by the row between Netanyahu and Obama. Worth a look.
Not surprisingly, a poll today has Tzipi Livni way ahead of Netanyahu on approval ratings, which means practically nothing, given that it's highly unlikely the government will fall. But it does underscore the terrible instability of the leadership structure in Israel, which is only good news if you compare it to how even more unstable the Palestinian leadership is.
I pulled Collins and Lapierre's O Jerusalem off the shelf this morning at 4 am, in a post-jetlag early morning reading session, and was reminded yet again how all the old issues are really truly old issues--dating back to the British Mandate period, the War of Independence, the Six Days War, you name it--for generations we have circled around the way to peace over and over and over again. The intimacy of the conflict is so apparent, reading this account of the 1948 war for Israel's independence. The solution to resolving it in front of everyone's nose, if there were only the will to make it happen, which, tragically, remains the same today.
In the long view, even though leading organizations in the American community (in this case, J Street and the ADL) disagree on the efficacy of Obama's strategy to push Israel--I am very pro-Obama on this--at least there is serious movement after seemingly virtually no movement during the Bush years. I want to re-emphasize to readers who are not following the reality on the ground too closely that beneath the headlines, one sees on the ground in Israel serious movement in a variety of interesting directions and one sees the potential for serious movement among Palestinians as well. The biggest problem, as is often the case, is with leadership. And it should not escape our grasp that Obama's overall strategy is to encourage a "ground-up" rejection of failed leadership in general in favor of a great push toward what other polls continually indicate--70% of each population wants peace.
We need the right leaders to help get us there.