Well, That's What They Do When They're Not Blowing Stuff Up
"U.S. Says Palestinians Just Making Stuff Up," Seth Mandel writes at Commentary. Quoting from a New York Times article titled “1967 Border Is a Source of Strain in the Israeli-Palestinian Talks,” Mandel adds that "it quickly becomes apparent that the truth is slightly different:"
The real problem, it seems, is that the Palestinians don’t want to start serious negotiations. The background is that the Palestinians supposedly asked for one of three preconditions for negotiations from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: releasing terrorist prisoners, freezing construction in settlements, or starting the talks from the 1967 lines. Netanyahu opted for the prisoner release.
That didn’t, in the end, satisfy the Palestinians, who claimed that they had received private assurances that the Obama administration would try to hold Israel to one of the preconditions Netanyahu didn’t agree to: a settlement freeze. And now the picture is complete: the Palestinians claim, apparently without proof, that the Obama administration also agreed to enforce the other precondition to which Israel never agreed.
And that lack of proof is problematic for the Palestinians, because the American moderators are growing exasperated with the Palestinians. They told the Times in response that not only are the Palestinians making this up out of whole cloth, but that the Times should know by now not to believe anything out of the Palestinian camp unless they also hear it from Washington:But American officials denied there was such a document, which would have been a significant gesture to the Palestinians and could have enraged Israel. “We have always said that if you don’t hear news about the talks from senior U.S. officials, you can’t count on it being reliable,” Marie E. Harf, a State Department spokeswoman, said in an e-mailed statement. “This is a good example.”
One of the reasons it’s so tempting for those involved in negotiations to leak to the press is that rumors can quickly become facts to those who hear them often enough. Being the first to establish a compelling narrative of any one situation can be to that party’s great advantage. And that seems to be what the Palestinians are doing.
And gullible American leftwing journalists, who desperately want to believe, will eat up all of the fine product that emerges from the Pallywood assembly line: