May 14th, 2012
12:41 PM ET

Will Israel's 'king' seek peace deal?

By Fareed Zakaria, CNN

While incumbent politicians around the world are struggling to hold on, one is thriving so much so that he's been called a king.

I'm talking about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who last week struck a deal to bring one of his main rivals, the Kadima party, into his government. Netanyahu's coalition now commands more than three-quarters of the Knesset — the largest parliamentary majority in Israeli history.

Netanyahu faces no plausible rival as prime minister. So he has an unusual, and perhaps unique, opportunity to use his new power to secure Israel's future.

When pushed on the Palestinian issue, Netanyahu has often cited the constraints of his coalition to explain why he had not taken bolder steps toward resolution. In the past, he seemed to like being restrained: He refused to form a national unity government in 1996 with Shimon Peres, and he refused again in 2009 with Tzipi Livni.

But now he has enough broad support — a big enough base with many moderates — that he could move toward a peace settlement without endangering his hold on power.

What should Netanyahu do next? Read Fareed’s Washington Post column to see what he thinks.

Topics: Israel • What in the World?

soundoff (205 Responses)
  1. samonrusty

    And I asked you another simple question. " While the European holocaust was in progress, how many Jews were rounded up and killed in the Arab/Muslim world? No reply????

    Yesterdays enemies are today's dearly beloved friends and those that didn't do you any harm are your new enemies.

    May 15, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      The Arab/Muslim world had a very substantial part in the holocaust, as it supported it in words and action (Google Mufti of Jerusalem) and practically forced the British to close Palestine to Jewish immigration- a crime against humanity that doomed millions of European Jews to death. This behavior toward the Jews was in line with the barbaric treatment of Jews in the lands of Islam, throughout the sorry relations that began with Muhammad's massacre of Jews in Medina and their total ethnic cleansing from Arabia.

      May 15, 2012 at 9:14 pm | Reply
      • samonrusty

        So the Jews are a people and Christians and Muslims are not a people?
        And you say the Mufti was responsible for the holocaust, not the Europeans who I believe at the time were all Muslims including Hitler's admirers among the British aristocracy and the royals. And we mustn't forget the Canadian Prime Minister Mackenzie who thought Hitler was like 'Joan of Arc' and of course Mr Blair,Canadian Director of Immgration who when asked how many Jews should be allowed to immigrate into Canada, said "None is too many" and of course the Americans and Canadians who refused entry to ships carrying fleeing Jews. They were all inspired by the Mufti as were the French, the Italians and other Europeans.
        Does "evil" come to mind. I guess not, it's anti-semitic.

        May 15, 2012 at 10:14 pm |
  2. samonrusty

    You want me to google. And who owns google. One of your 'people'?

    May 15, 2012 at 10:18 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      The US is a meritocracy. Jews succeed in it without any favors. On the contrary, probably. If you don't like that , stay in Arabia. Why do you Muslims flock to Western Europe and the US, if you don't like their culture? Why do you emigrate out of your self made deserts if you forbid immigration to any place you ever laid a hand on?

      May 15, 2012 at 10:26 pm | Reply
      • samonrusty

        Does the Jewish meritocracy include the world's biggest swindler Madoff?

        May 15, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
      • samonrusty

        Were you thinking of Madoff?

        May 15, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
      • A-Jad

        So, Samon, you haven't answered my question. What are you doing in the US? In Western Europe? don't you have enough living space in Arabia? or in all other countries you've misappropriated from Persia to the Atlantic? why do you invade other people's countries if that's bad?

        May 15, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
      • Thinker23

        Salmon... If you believe that ALL Jews should take responsibility for Madoff are YOU, as a Muslim, take responsibility for Osama Bin Laden?

        May 16, 2012 at 6:10 am |
  3. samonrusty

    But for the Mufti, the millions of Jews would all have been saved and here I was cursing Hitler and the Germans and all those Europeans loading the wagons. Darn! Sorry guys. It was the Mufti all along.

    May 15, 2012 at 10:49 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      The Mufti stands for Palestinians as he was their foremost leader. Had they not prevailed on the British to close the doors of Palestine, millions could indeed be saved. That's a historical fact. But you don't like fact. Which is why a dialogue with you is futile. It will be a deaf dialog as long as you retain that Muslim culture that only sees itself. Good night.

      May 16, 2012 at 12:10 am | Reply
  4. samonrusty

    In addition to the Mufti, I don't like Marlon Brando either, hear what he said about the Jew to Larry King. ( Youtube ).

    May 15, 2012 at 11:13 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      Haha. Larry King himself is a Jew. Many successful people in the Us are Jewish. What;s you point?

      May 16, 2012 at 12:17 am | Reply
      • Thinker23

        HIs point is that every Jew is responsible for Madoff... but somehow I doubt that Salmon is willing to take responsibility for Oslama bin Laden.... Right, Salmon?

        May 16, 2012 at 6:12 am |
    • A-Jad

      Give me a break with 'young Palestinian kids' etc. Blame their own people send them to the front line and hide behind them. If you care so much about morality, where are you when Arabs indiscriminately kill innocent Israeli civilians; where are you when Arabs kill infinitely more of your own kids? you don't really care. at all. It's all propaganda for you.

      May 16, 2012 at 11:02 am | Reply
  5. samonrusty

    You are a bunch of fools. Thinker telling me that his dictionary ( published by "successful" jews ) says antisemitism means hatred of Jews. Really??? As if I didn't know that. The point I was making is that the word's ethnic connotation has been hijacked as western Jews are not of semitic race, but white/caucasians.
    How more dishonest can you guys be, to transfer the blame for almost a millenium of hatred of Jews in the West with major pogroms, inquisitions, holocausts on to the Arabs/Muslims, knowing fully well that that history was not replicated in the Muslim world. And that says it all, when you have blinkers on.
    The reason I wanted you to refer to Montagu's memo was to make the point that much of what I say is supported by Jews, including Israeli Jews ( who you cannot accuse of being anti-semitic ). I have a letter with me from an Israeli Jew, a Professor at a British University confirming that Balfour's declaration for a Jewish homeland was based more on his desire to get the Jews out of Europe rather than any sympathy for them. Anti-semitism was deeply rooted throughout the West for hundreds of years. I know of Jews who weren't allowed to stay in hotels because they were Jews.
    When you forget your own history, you are not going to learn any lessons from it.
    It is total intellectual dishonesty to claim that all Jews are one ethnic group, unless of course the aim is to justify occupying the lands in the middle east, based on some mythology.
    And as for Madoff. Be honest, how many of your people are or were involved in the world's financial crisis; so the greed is not confined to one lone guy.
    One final point re culture, it is possible that I know far more about Shakespeare and Beethoven and Michaelangelo and the classics than you guys. And I wear jeans, have a big Mac etc. etc. So what's your point? Muslim immigrants to the West don't demolish people's houses and occupy their lands. They work hard and live peaceful, law abiding lives. You guys started your invasion of the middle east on a fabricated lie, a biblical myth and then introduced terrorism thru' the Stern and Irgun terrorists. Sure there were Jews living in Palestine for thousands of years but I can assure they were no relation of yours, the Russian Jew or the Chinese Jew. They were all local population.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:28 am | Reply
    • Thinker23

      Salmon... If you're curious how a Semitic Jew living in Judea 2000 years ago looked like visit your local chirch. They'll gladly show you pictures of a Jew who was boen in Bethlehem 2012 years ago and lived in Nazareth, Jerusalem and other places in the area. You'll be amazed to discover that HE DID NOT LOOK LIKE AN ARAB AT ALL.
      Further, I have not seen anyone blaming Arabs/Muslims for hundreds of years of anti-Semitism. This is, apparently, your own original invention, Salmon.
      Still further, the common definition of an ethnic group is "a group of people having common culture, language, history and smoetimes religion". Being an ethnic group DOES NOT justify "occupying the lands in the Middle East" or anywhere else. This being said, however, Palestinians ARE NOT an ethnic group and neither you nor anyone else have shown anything proving that the land of Palestine belongs to them.
      Regarding Madoff... Be honest, how many of YOUR people are involved in terrorism? Are you willing to accept the responsibility for it? If not then don't blame the Jews for Madoff.
      Regarding "invasion to the Middle East... Can you NAME AN EXISTING STATE the land of Palestine belongs to? IN return I'll name the states in the West Muslims are immigrating into. Deal?

      May 16, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Reply
      • samonrusty

        Kiddo you don't go by the pictures you see in church. You moron, the guy was not Scandinavian or European with blonde hair and blue eyes. God, unfortunately for you racists, chose a woman in the middle east not a Polish broad. The guy was born in the Gaza neighborhood and spoke Aramaic, a language still spoken in parts of Syria. In Africa, his pictures are brown. What an idiot.
        Peter, Paul all that gibberish. Have you ever heard of Palestinians or Syrians with those kind of English names. There were no frickin holocaust escapees in those days. Go back to Russia.

        May 16, 2012 at 6:07 pm |
      • A-Jad

        I don't see what this has to do with the subject, but of course Jesus was Jewish. Indeed, he of Davidic descent according to the New Testament, which is something that most New Testament scholars agree was the case. Salmon is as uninformed about this as most other Arabs, who claim that the Jewish Temple didn't exist in Jerusalem, etc etc. Muhammad's horse probably had more brains than his modern average followers .

        May 16, 2012 at 9:37 pm |
      • Thinker23

        Salmon... The vast majority of Jews have dark hair and brown eyes. So did Jesus.

        May 17, 2012 at 12:11 pm |
  6. samonrusty

    One other point, the young Palestinian kids that you kill everyday had nothing to do with your torturous history in Europe. It is very likely that their ancestors were Jews or Christians before they converted to Islam. They are the real semites. If you want an end to anti-semitism, you could begin by being more sensitive to the sufferings of others ( using Brando's words ).
    Listen to the words of Dr Hajo Meyer a Auschwitz survivor on youtube and reflect.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:20 am | Reply
    • A-Jad

      Give me a break with 'young Palestinian kids' etc. Blame their own people send them to the front line and hide behind them. If you care so much about morality, where are you when Arabs indiscriminately kill innocent Israeli civilians, kids and adults; where are you when Arabs kill infinitely more of your own kids? you don't really care. at all. It's all propaganda to you.

      May 16, 2012 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • Thinker23

      If the Palestinians in general and "young Palestinians kids" in particular did not like the current arrangement they would NEGOTIATE a better deal long ago. On the other hand, as long as they're willing the war to continue it will mean that they're happy with the results. When the number of dead Palestinians wil satisfy those still alive they will ask for peace.

      May 16, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Reply
  7. samonrusty

    And finally, I do believe that the Jews are a very accomplished people, because they believe in education and hard work and because of that they hold a sway over Wall Street, the legal and medical professions, Hollywood, media etc.
    But too much concentration of these in a minority does raise questions. I think anyone would ask that question. Doesn't mean you are anti-anyone really.
    It also begs the question why people who are a) very smart and b) been the target of victimisation throughout history, be so callous to the suffering of others and recognise that there can be no peace without justice for all.
    The west bank and gaza we all know are only slightly better than Alcatraz.

    May 16, 2012 at 10:35 am | Reply
    • A-Jad

      The problem of the world isn't that Jews are 'accomplished people' but that Islam is an iron age religion, that causes retardation of all who practice it, backwardness of all countries who make it their state religion, and source of most violence in the world.

      May 16, 2012 at 11:06 am | Reply
  8. Larry

    Netanyahu didn't refuse to join a coalition with Tzipi Livni's Kadima. It was Livni who refused to join Likud, while Netanyahu was practically begging her to join so he wouldn't be so beholden to the smaller parties. She left him no choice. Very similar to how the Palestininans have refused to talk peace with Israel, despite Israel practially begging them to sit and talk. If they weren't so intransigent, the Palestinians would get much of what they wanted.

    May 16, 2012 at 11:25 am | Reply
  9. samonrusty

    Good thing you were hiding under that bi t h Ann Frank's bed while the Gestapo were pumping away. Too traumatized for any rational discussion. Don't forget to visit the holocaust memorial before shooting at some semite Palestinian kids speaking that funny semitic language.

    May 16, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      How deep. Look who's harping on the holocaust now.

      May 16, 2012 at 12:54 pm | Reply
  10. samonrusty

    Yeah you bet. That's what happens when you totally ignore the points made and start the usual Islam bashing knowing full well tha t there is no way I am going to attack the Torah or the Bible which Muslims regard as holy books and revere all the prophets of the Bible. Although I can assure you there is a thousand times more violence in the Bible ( Deutronomy ) than there is in the Quran.
    And you even show total disrespect for a Auschwitz survivor or what he had to say.
    Unfortunately you guys are so power drunk now what with America's backing and hundreds of nuclear warheads that racism, occupation, war, nothing matters. To hell with world opoinion.
    As for Thinker he is really a child; going by the pictures he see in church. Maybe he should go to churches in Ethiopia where Jesus ( or whatever his real name was ) is depicted as brown. The guy and his Mom are shown as Scandinavian looking in the West, because the day they show him and his Mom as middle eastern looking, the Christian world will go back to paganism. He spoke the language Aramaic, still spoken in parts of Syria and he was born what 15 kilometres from the Gaza strip? So go on dreaming Thinker ( who doesn't think )

    May 16, 2012 at 5:56 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      You can attack the Torah to your heart's content. We don't restrict criticism of anything, including religious texts. I honestly believe that Islam is the source of all troubles in the wworld, starting with those who practice it. Most other non Muslims in the world believe that. If you need to styfle free speech, stay in the Lands of Islam. I ask you for the 5th time, why do you swamp Western Countries, when you have all these lands from Persia to the Atlantic to yourselves?

      May 16, 2012 at 7:20 pm | Reply
      • samonrusty

        And for the 100th time why do you guys move to the middle east and steal steal steal. Why did you wait for Hitler? Just a coincidence?

        May 17, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
      • samonrusty

        And for the 100th time why do you guys move to the middle east and steal steal steal.

        May 17, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
      • samonrusty

        That's what Hitler, the Europeans and most Americans and Canadians said about the Jews, for a thousand years that "they were a source of all trouble". Honestly. You can do the research. In fact I believe Blair, the Immigration boss in Canada in the 30's had this to say:In a letter to a supporter of his anti-Jewish immigration policies, Blair wrote, “I suggested recently to three Jewish gentlemen with whom I am well acquainted, but it might be a very good thing if they would call a conference and have a day of humiliation and prayer, which might profitably be extended for a week or more, where they would honestly try to answer the question of why they are so unpopular almost everywhere...I often think that instead of persecution it would be far better if we more often told them frankly why many of them are unpopular. If they would divest themselves of certain of their habits I am sure they could be just as popular in Canada as our Scandinavian friends are"

        May 17, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • Thinker23

      Salmon... The oldest known pictures of Jesus were made by Romans and Bizantines during the 3rd and 4th Century AD. There were many thousands of Jews from Judea there at the time for the creators of those pictures to make the Jew named Jesus to look like a Jew and NOT like an Arab, an African or a European. I would suggest you to GET A CLUE of what you're talking about in the future so you will not make a fool of yourself at every opportunity.

      May 17, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Reply
      • samonrusty

        Crucifixion was the preferred method for middle eastern terrorists in those days. Now he would have been killed by a hell-fire missile by the Americans/Israelis. No one would then have known what Thinker's Scandinavian looking, English speaking Jesus would have looked like. First they killed him then 3 centuries later they started worshipping him and of course painted pictures of him and his middle eastern mother to look like Northern Italians.

        May 17, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
  11. A-Jad

    The sorry relations of Jews with Islam started with Muhammad decapitating all post puberty Jews of the Jewish tribe of Banu Qoraise, in the Suk of Medina, May 627. After that he forced the Jews of Khaibar into a status of dhimmis, between Muslim women and dogs. He promised them they could stay in Arabia but his second successor Omar nevertheless chased them all out of Arabia. Talk about ethnic cleansing. This is the historical fact. Your myths about the wonderful life of Jews in Islam, is just that. Myth. They lived sometime better and sometimes worse than the Jews of Christianity. The difference was like the difference between Cholera and Black Death. Jews needed a land of their own. They returned to their homeland. You can't accept it because you want to take everything and give nothing. You are barbarians. But there's still hope for you, because it's only in your religion, not your biology. One day you'll evolve to a higher level and out of the iron age. In the meantime, we'll defend ourselves from you rabid fanaticism.

    May 16, 2012 at 10:06 pm | Reply
    • samonrusty

      These Arab Jews were no relation of your pork-chop eating ancestors in Poland.

      May 17, 2012 at 1:47 pm | Reply
    • samonrusty

      How did they live in Moorish Spain and in Turkey after the Spanish Inquisition? Was it Cholera or Black Death?

      May 17, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  12. A-Jad

    Deep Salmon. Very deep thoughts. Summing you up, you hate blond and blue eyed people. You can swamp their lands but nobody , blond. dark or purple, can ever live in any land you've ever touched. As I said, you belong in the Iron Age. So be it, but leave the Jews alone, or stop whining when you lose genocidal wars you start against them.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:39 pm | Reply
  13. samonrusty

    tiny extract of Montagu's memo to the British Cabinet in Aug. 1917:
    1.I assert that there is not a Jewish nation. The members of my family, for instance, who have been in this country for generations, have no sort or kind of community of view or of desire with any Jewish family in any other country beyond the fact that they profess to a greater or less degree the same religion. It is no more true to say that a Jewish Englishman and a Jewish Moor are of the same nation than it is to say that a Christian Englishman and a Christian Frenchman are of the same nation: of the same race, perhaps, traced back through the centuries – through centuries of the history of a peculiarly adaptable race.
    2.When the Jews are told that Palestine is their national home, every country will immediately desire to get rid of its Jewish citizens.
    3.3.I deny that Palestine is to-day associated with the Jews or properly to be regarded as a fit place for them to live in. .
    4.I feel that the Government are asked to be the instrument for carrying out the wishes of a Zionist organisation largely run, as my information goes, at any rate in the past, by men of enemy descent or birth.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:43 pm | Reply
  14. samonrusty

    As far as you are concerned Shlomo Sand is wrong, Dr Hajo Meyer a Auschwitz survivor is wrong, all non-Zionist Jews are wrong and you are right. So end of discussion. There is no way I am going to convince you and I disagree with almost everything you say. So good luck to you. Sixty plus years have not brought any peace, all because it's the Palestinians fault.

    Injustice didn't work in South Africa; didn't work in the colonies; doesn't work in dictatorships; doesn't work in states which use state terror.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      I don't say the non peace situation is entirely the fault of Palestinians. But if they wanted a state, they could have it in 1948, in 2001 and in 2007. They always reject that because what they want is a second state for themselves in the West Bank (after Jordan.) And another state half theirs, which is today Israel. The Jews should have nothing. They should be content with the status of dhimmis , denoting restricted individual rights, and no collective rights. You call that justice. That's because you have a Hotentot notion of justice (injustice is when my neighbor steals from me, and justice is when I steal from him.)

      May 17, 2012 at 5:18 pm | Reply
  15. A-Jad

    You don't understand what being Jewish is all about. To most Jews it's about belonging to the same ancient people, originating from the same ancient land, with a distinct religion. Forcing Jews to give up their collective right of Jewish nationality was something the French did after their revolution. This mickey mouse of Montagu person is just a cowardly reflection of that flagrant injustice inflicted on Jews in some countries, denying their collective rights as a condition for giving them personal rights. Jews are and were a people before Arabs. Get over it.

    May 17, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Reply
  16. samonrusty

    I think you've made it very clear that I don't understand, and neither do the Shlomo Sand's, the Dr Hajo Meyer's, the Montagu's and other non-Zionists, who you are scornful of.
    Nothing in the world will convince you. And I see where you are coming from. I've seen it in the eyes of those gun-toting settlers from northern Europe, proclaiming that the Lord gave them the land.
    The power of mythology continues to wreak havoc, from Hagee's Cornerstone church in Texas to the middle east to Pakistan. Abraham of Iraq, where are you?

    May 17, 2012 at 5:49 pm | Reply
  17. samonrusty

    I know you are all the same people, same everything and the Lord gave you the land. I've got over it

    May 17, 2012 at 5:57 pm | Reply
    • A-Jad

      To most Jews It has little to do with the Lord, but with historical facts. History has this land as the only land that Jews called their own, for at least 1100 years. )To religious Jews it's indeed the Lord's command , as stated in the Torah. (And also in the Quran. Check e.g. Sura 5:21.) In any event, Jews claim only this little piece of land, while Muslims claim the entire world.

      May 17, 2012 at 6:08 pm | Reply
      • samonrusty

        Ok nothing to do with the Lord, but stated in the Torah ( for the religious Jews ).
        All I say ( I know it's rubbish to you, so you don't have to tell me ) is that of course there were Jews in the middle east before Christians and Muslims; it's older than both, but no religious grouping in the world can claim to be one race or one ethnicity or point to one single piece of land as the origin of every single one of it's followers/adherents.
        The predominant position on the origins of man are in the Rift Valley, I am not sure if that would be sufficient for me to have any claim on the valley in east Africa.
        In the present climate of another push for war, I was pleasantly surprised to read in a book byDirector of the British Museum, Neil Macgregor " A history of the world in 100 objects, Page169, where he says the Persian Emperor Cyrus's most famous beneficiaries, after the conquest of Babylon, were the Jews and in the Hebrew scriptures he is hailed as a "divinely inspired benefactor and hero"

        May 17, 2012 at 6:42 pm |
  18. A-Jad

    Unlike Islam Judaism allows criticism and diversity of opinion. Sand and his band have their views, that are the views of a very small minority. There were always anti Jewish Jews among Jews, and they're modern refection of that sorry phenomenon. Most Jews regard them as traitors to their own people. In any event, they don't carry much water and even less weight. The fact itself that the worst enemies of the Jewish people gleefully cite them is proof of their irrelevance to their own people. If they were Muslims saying similar things about Islam, you'd have decapitated them. We just nod in pity and shame.

    May 17, 2012 at 5:57 pm | Reply
  19. Aaron Chaney

    Romney vs. Frankenstein (Obama)

    Put simply, better the devil you don't know. Vote Romney.

    May 25, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Reply
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