Last Friday the Huffington Post engaged in its usual pattern by posting many Israel related articles all at one time. Shockingly a couple of the blog posts were actually somewhat balanced. Even more shockingly, one of them was by Ziad J. Asali of the American Task Force on Palestine:
"All of these trends are in play among the Palestinians. But Palestinians also have to contend with a distinctive challenge not faced by other Arabs: the occupation. Living under occupation means that others, particularly Israel and the donor community, can set real limits in deciding what the Palestinians can and cannot do. In most ways, this is a profound disadvantage for Palestine. But it does also mean that Palestinians can construct their state from scratch. Notwithstanding recent UN and other international recognitions, there's no existing sovereign Palestinian state on the ground, although there is indeed a virtual and aspirational one.
The issue of Palestinian political legitimacy can only be resolved through free and fair elections. This means not just voting, but preparing the political basis for elections by enabling a contest of ideas, values, and choices that allows for the formation of parties and brings in new leaders."You should consider reading the whole thing.
In the other corner, as if to seal the deal that the Huffington Post's love affair with J Street has firmly come to a close, Laurel Kaufer published her reaction to a debate between Jeremy Ben-Ami and Roz Rothstein, and found Ben-Ami to be sorely lacking:
"This is not mediation. A mediator does not take an active role in negotiations. Under Mr. Ben-Ami's plan, the United States would be engaging in neither responsible mediation nor responsible diplomacy. Rather, it would be bullying the parties in an attempt to force an "American" agenda, or, more specifically, J Street's agenda, on the parties in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
My belief in J Street as an organization that promotes a mediative approach to this conflict was wholly undermined by Mr. Ben-Ami's lack of understanding of the process of mediation. It was in fact Roz Rothstein of StandWithUs who carried the appropriate message regarding mediation throughout the conversation."Oh, snap!