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Ettinger: Israel Should “Just Say No”

Arutz Sheva January 1, 2003

American-Israeli
relations expert Yoram Ettinger was asked today how it is that the
current American administration, which has accepted Israel’s position
that Arafat is no longer relevant, is “forcing” Israel to renew the
transfer of monies to the PA. His response:

“This happens,
unfortunately, because the State Department formulates policy, the
Administration passes it on to Israel, and then Israel, in a most
schlemiel-like manner, accepts it as if it’s a real dictate. Before
1993, Israel knew how to say no to the U.S., and the current
Administration itself is amazed at the ease with which the State
Department demands are accepted by Israel. I have no doubt that if
Israel would say that under no circumstances will we transfer money
that will be used to finance suicide bombers and explosives vests and
car bombs, just as the U.S. would never do so to Al-Qaeda, I have no
doubt that the U.S. would accept this… Similarly, I have no doubt
that the U.S. would accept a firm Israeli position stating that there
is no connection at all between loan guarantees and the settlements in
Yesha – [in keeping with] the American position itself that it will not
force an agreement on the sides.”

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