Israeli Committee against House Demolitions Mr. Itay Epstein, Interactive Dialogue with: – Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967 A/HRC/20/32 . Item 7: Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories – 25th Plenary Meeting. 20th Session of the Human Rights Council. HRC Extranet.
It was Shamir who taught Bibi the method of pushing off the risk of concession without saying “no” to the Americans and inventing preconditions for the political process that the Arabs would undoubtedly reject. Shamir demanded that the PLO not be invited to the Madrid Conference that the administration of Bush senior convened at the end of 1991. Shamir demanded the Palestinian delegation be part of the Jordanian one and not include any representative from East Jerusalem. And just to be sure, he also demanded that every Arab nation, especially Syria, show up in Madrid.
To Shamir’s great surprise, the Palestinians agreed to all the conditions and found indirect stratagem that made a laughingstock out of Israel, such as finding East Jerusalem representatives who also happened to have addresses is Ramallah. I remember the panic in the Prime Minister’s Office after its staff read a piece I published in this newspaper about an American congressman who had visited Damascus bearing the message that Hafez Assad had decided to dispatch his foreign minister to the Madrid Conference. When I met Shamir a few days later, I couldn’t resist, and said to him, “You’re right, Mr. Prime Minister, you just can’t trust those Arabs.” Shamir, knowing what I meant, didn’t laugh. He was not amused.
Netanyahu’s policy on the settlements and his demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people demonstrate that Netanyahu is Shamir without the mustache.