The 1,600 Palestinian documents published by al-Jazeera this past week, just like the account of the diplomatic negotiations made public by former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, tell the same story.
One can give or take a little here or there, but at the end of the day this is the deal. There is no other deal. We can spend another 10 years negotiating, or alternately, have another 10 years of terror attacks and retaliatory strikes, yet the map will remain the same. The genius that can convince them to accept less or convince us to give more had not yet been born.
The Palestinians will not disappear and we will not be moving to New Jersey. If anyone wants to make peace, this is the only peace we can make.
It’s permissible to think that this peace is not worthwhile, and that if this is the price of peace we should not be paying it. This is a legitimate position, and many Israelis espouse it and make convincing arguments to support it. However, deception is impermissible.
Those who claim that there is another possibility are lying – either to themselves or to us. There is no other trick that had not been thought of yet; there is no sketch that had not yet been drawn; there is no revolutionary idea that had not been raised.
This is the deal. We can decide that we are not going for it, but we will be gaining nothing by pretending that the agreement can be drafted any differently.
And now, with the facts out in the open, we can embark on real negotiations – not with the Palestinians, but rather, with ourselves. The Israelis need to talk to the Israelis: A deep, genuine and complex conversation, at the end of which we shall decide on the best option out of the two: Either go for this deal, or not.
Regrettably, there is no third option.
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