How they see it

John Kerry's Middle East peace efforts

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 12 January, 2014, 3:43am
UPDATED : Sunday, 12 January, 2014, 3:43am

1. The Jerusalem Post

The US Secretary of State ... has managed singlehandedly to breathe life into what many thought was a hopeless undertaking - the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The gaps that separate the sides from compromise are immense ... From the "right of return" for Palestinian "refugees" to the prospect of uprooting tens of thousands of Jews from Judea and Samaria to the status of Jerusalem ... Kerry has provided the requisite optimism ... as both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas have grown increasingly sceptical ... With all the difficulties in reaching a negotiated two-state solution ... Kerry's efforts deserve praise and support. Jerusalem


2. The Washington Post

After 10 visits to Israel and the Palestinian territories ... Kerry has made no visible progress towards a comprehensive peace deal - a long-shot cause that he has single-mindedly pursued even as more violent and urgent crises in Syria, Iraq and Egypt are starved of US engagement. Kerry has, however, succeeded in putting Netanyahu and Abbas on the spot ... [pressing] them to consider a US-designed "agreed framework" that would set out principles for resolving "core issues" ... If Israelis and Palestinians prove unwilling ... to commit to the broad trade-offs a peace deal requires soon, Kerry should accept defeat - and spend a little more time on the wars, coups and terrorism engulfing the rest of the region. Washington


3. The Nation

Though John Kerry's efforts [on Israel and Palestine] have effected little change so far, one thing he has done is place Benjamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas in the international spotlight. By doing so, Kerry is hoping the burden of leadership these two men carry will force them into making concessions. It's a long shot, but it's worth a try. And this is where the outside powers come in. Kerry knows that, if he can't persuade neighbouring countries like Jordan and Saudi Arabia to exert pressure on the Palestinian Authority, Abbas - swayed by his own people's anger at the very idea of concessions - will probably wriggle out of any major commitment toward peace. The same goes for Netanyahu. Bangkok