a'la Thomas Friedman. Too much to expect from Fred Hiatt and his crew?
Another craven element of the editorial is suggesting that President Obama has engaged in an "embarrassing retreat in Middle East diplomacy". There is no evidence whatsoever that President Obama has retreated from his efforts to achieve a resolution of the Israel-Palestine conflict. The evidence, actually, suggests the opposite.
As for who came out of this looking less than impressive, that would be Binyamin "I was offered the world and I asked for a pony - and I got it, so I asked for a gazillion dollars and some new jets - and I got it, so I asked for even more, and I got it, so I walked away" Netanyahu. Had Netanyahu accepted President Obama's exceptionally generous package of incentives, he would have had to come to the bargaining table with a map in hand, so he instead said "no" and resumed construction of settlements on Palestinian land. As it stands, Obama looks like an adult, Abbas looks like an adult (which, perhaps, explains the smear campaign), and Netanyahu looks like... himself. And he's placed Israel in the position of looking like the obstructionist party that won't engage in good faith negotiations for peace. Some leadership....
Frankly, I was never impressed by assurances that Netanayahu had changed his spots. His recent actions simply confirm that he has not. Now, should President Obama desire, he is free to come up with a package acceptable to the U.S., Europe and the rest of the Middle East, present it to Netanyahu (or his successor) and again put the onus on Netanyahu to demonstrate that he's interested in resolving the conflict.