UPDATES 9 pm Israel time, Monday, January 6 2014:
*Southern Israel was hit by another rocket fired by Hamas terrorists in Gaza this morning. As has become usual, there were no warning sirens and no IDF announcements about the attack, but numerous residents reported hearing the blast, and local security forces are currently looking for the precise location of the missile strike.
With John Kerry swirling about the region, the leaks about the so-called “peace process” have turned into a torrent with everyone from the Jordanians to the Saudis chiming in about what they have been told by the American Secretary of State.
And while there is no separate corroboration of any of these reports, there is no reason for your humble servant to doubt their veracity. In fact, some of them have already been reported on israelstreet.
Here are the newest “revelations”:
*As blogged earlier this week, PM Netanyahu has made it clear that he is willing to cede the Wadi Ara triangle of northern Israel to the Palestinians. The 52 km2 area is currently home to approximately 300,000 Israeli-Arabs. In fact, this idea actually is the brainchild of FM Lieberman.
The likelihood that this idea will be implemented is somewhere between slim and none. In the first place, there has been a parade of Israeli Arabs coming forth in the last 24 hours to call the plan “racist” and to declare that they have no desire to give up their Israeli citizenship for Palestinian citizenship (despite the fact that the residents of this area regularly fly Palestinian flags and are among the most vitriolic of Israel-haters). In the second place, what would be the impact of such a move on the 1.3 million Israeli Arabs who remained in Israel?.
*John Kerry has offered the Palestinians a capital in a “Greater Jerusalem”. According to this proposal, the municipal boundaries of Jerusalem would be expanded to Abu Dis or perhaps toward the Dead Sea. Either way, the Palestinians would not be getting a capital in the eastern neighborhoods of Jerusalem as they currently exist.
*In return for possibly extracting an agreement from Abbas to recognize a Jewish state of Israel, Kerry is demanding that Netanyahu agree to admit an as yet unspecified number of Palestinian so-called “refugees” into Israel.
It should be added that FM Lieberman declared yesterday that not one Palestinian “refugee” would ever be admitted back into Israel.
*The Palestinians have possibly agreed to a three year IDF presence in the Jordan Valley in a configuration that would include American military observers.
However, it should be noted that senior Palestinian officials declared yesterday that not one Israeli soldier will be allowed in a future state of Palestine.
In sum, while there still seems to have been no Palestinian concessions on any issues, PM Netanyahu is turning backflips to keep Kerry happy and the Israeli concession process alive.