Obama Offers Sober Assessment of Middle East Peace Prospects
After hosting an historic two-day nuclear summit, US President Barack Obama offered reporters a sober assessment of the likelihood of imminent peace between Palestine and Israel. The Obama administration has been engaged in (sometimes) subtle diplomatic sparring with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu after Mr. Netanyahu refused to concede to US and international pressure to halt the construction of Jewish settlements, particularly in occupied East Jerusalem. Speaking on Tuesday, Mr. Obama stated that “The truth is in some of these conflicts the United States can’t impose solutions unless the participants in these conflicts are willing to break out of old patterns of antagonism.” Although both the US and Israel have stated they are committed to finding solutions and have vowed to remain constantly engaged, leaders in both administrations have so far declined to waiver on paramount issues such as settlement construction. Obama has acknowledged that the Middle East peace process will take time and that progress will undoubtedly be met with frustrations.