Yesterday, President Obama asked Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to back off his proposed plan to unilaterally declare Palestinian statehood. According to the White House:
In his discussion with President Abbas, President Obama reaffirmed his commitment to Middle East peace and his strong support for direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians with the objective of two states living side by side in peace and security. He also reiterated the United States’ opposition to unilateral efforts at the United Nations.
Abbas answered this cordial request with a cordial answer: “No.” According to Palestinian spokesman Nabil Abu Redeina, “There was a long telephone conversation between president Mahmud Abbas and Barack Obama. Obama expressed the opposition of the United States to the decision to go to the UN General Assembly.” That’s when Abbas told Obama to stick it. “Abbas cited the reasons and motives for the Palestinian decision to seek non-member statehood as continued Israeli settlement activity and Israeli aggression against citizens and property.”
The question isn’t why Abbas would refuse. The question is why last year, Abbas didn’t pursue Palestinian statehood. The answer is obvious: Obama now has more flexibility on the issue. He has done his duty by asking the PA to hold off. Now, when Abbas forces his hand, Obama may stab Israel in the back one last time