The New York Times in today's editorial
continues its long tradition of being clueless. According to the "newspaper of record", since Arafat has died and Abu Mazen hasn't explicitly come out and endorsed jihad, its now Israel's turn to make concessions.
The first order of business is to give the moderate Mr. Abbas something tangible to help him shore up his credibility with the Palestinian people. Mr. Sharon should immediately announce a complete freeze on settlement activity in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
Next, Mr. Sharon has got to do all he can to expedite free, full and fair elections involving all Palestinians - including those in East Jerusalem.
And after that, Israel should give up all the West Bank and Gaza, as well as half of Jerusalem.
Lost in the NYT's prescriptions for peace is the essential problem - terrorism. No word on the Palestinians dismantling terrorist organizations or stopping attacks on Israel. They still haven't figured out that the key reason why there is no peace is not because of settlements or Jerusalem or "refugees". These are all just codewords for the Palestinians for their true desire - the destruction of Israel. Until the Arabs accept Israel as a permanent feature of the landscape of the Middle East, and until they decide that they would rather build their own society rather than destroy someone else's, there will be no peace. The New York Times's prescription for peace is that Israel surrender.