Mideast Clarity ATF, After Tom Friedman

February 2, 2011 12:14 by

I agree with a lot of points Tom Friedman makes about Israeli concerns over Egypt.

But he puzzles me with this comment:

To put it bluntly, if Israelis tell themselves that Egypt’s unrest proves why Israel cannot make peace with the Palestinian Authority, then they will be talking themselves into becoming an apartheid state — they will be talking themselves into permanently absorbing the West Bank and thereby laying the seeds for an Arab majority ruled by a Jewish minority between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River.

The ferment in Tahrir Square — sobering as it is from my desk in Jerusalem — doesn’t prove that peace with the Palestinians is unattainable anymore than it proves that the Steelers will cover the spread on Super Bowl Sunday.

But selling a peace agreement to the Israeli public will become much harder if the next Egyptian government rolls back the Camp David accords, which happens to be the only land-for-peace effort that didn’t blow up in Israel’s face (the others being the Oslo process, the Lebanon withdrawal, and the Gaza disengagement).

Yes, Tom. A huge storm is coming.

Related reading: Israel, Alone Again?

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