Middle East Peace: Elliott Abrams One-on-One

Ideas in Action with Jim Glassman is a new half-hour weekly series on ideas and their consequences.
Middle East Peace: Jim and Elliott Abrams discuss the Obama administration's progress on resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Transcript

Grace creek media
"iia Elliott abrams"
Interview with Elliott abrams
correspondent:  Jim glassman
JIM GLASSMAN:
Welcome to Ideas in Action, a television series about ideas and their consequences.  I'm Jim Glassman.  This week, Israel and the United States, a peace process in peril?  The longstanding friendship between the US and Israel was tested recently with the announcement that Israel planned to build settlements in a disputed section of Jerusalem.  Despite recent diplomatic efforts to mend frayed ties, some critics are wondering whether the Obama administration has a deep enough commitment to its long-time ally in the Middle East.

My guest today is Elliot Abrams, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, and former deputy national security advisor for the Middle East under President George W. Bush.  The topic this week, the US, Israel and the Palestinians.  This is Ideas in Action.
ANNOUNCER:
Funding for Ideas in Action is provided by Investor's Business Daily.  Every stock market cycle is led by America's never-ending stream of innovative new companies and inventions.  Investor's Business Daily helps investors find these new leaders as they emerge.  More information is available at investors.com.
JIM GLASSMAN:
The issue of Israeli settlements in disputed territory had been in a stalemate, until the Obama Administration decided to pressure the Israelis to openly vow not to build more settlements.
PRESIDENT OBAMA:
Israel's right to exist cannot be denied.  Neither can Palestine's.  The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements.
JIM GLASSMAN:
Israel responded by announcing, during a visit from American Vice-President Joe Biden, that it would build in disputed areas of Jerusalem.  The timing of the announcement was embarrassing for the United States.  And caused the US to strongly protest those plans.
MALE VOICE #2:
The United States-- states condemns the decision today by the government of Israel, on advance planning for new housing units in East Jerusalem.
JIM GLASSMAN:
The resulting diplomatic furor has led many observers to question the Obama Administration's commitment to an Israeli-Palestinian peace process.  What will it take to mend the relationship between the US and Israel?  Elliott, you wrote an opinion piece in the Weekly Standard recently that argued that the Obama Administration was making a big, big mistake in its approach to the Middle East peace process.  Not sure you want to call it a process, but to Middle East peace between the Palestinians and the Israelis.  Can you explain why you think it's making such a big mistake?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
I don't know your-- if your show is long enough-- for me to roll out all of these--
JIM GLASSMAN:
Just a few.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
--Mistakes.  Just a few.  First, I guess, and-- and-- most significant.  They seem to think that peace between Israel and the Palestinians comes top-down.  It is created someplace at a conference table in-- in Taba or Camp David or Annapolis or Geneva.  And that's wrong.  Peace between Israel and the Palestinians will be created between them, on the ground, in the real world.  And it will depend on essentially what happens on the West Bank, on creating the institutions of Palestinian-- self-government.  And the fight against terrorism, I guess-- critical things on the Palestinian side.  So--concentrating on diplomacy, concentrating on the settlements is just wrong.  That's not what's critical.  What's critical is what happens in the so-- in the West Bank.
JIM GLASSMAN:
So the United States, though, has a major stake in what happens in Israel and the West Bank.  So is there anything we can do to influence that?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, I think there is.  And I think-- we in the Bush Administration didn't do quite enough, and I think the Obama Administration isn't either, in helping the Palestinians create a state, build the institutions that they need for a state.  We're doing far more than nothing.  I mean, just as a good example, the US has trained 2600 Palestinian policemen.  We've got another 500 in training who I think graduate sometime-- toward the end of the year.

That's a terrific contribution to law and order in a future Palestinian state.  But when you concentrate on the diplomacy and the conferences, and worse yet, more foolish yet, the settlement idea, you're not helping the Palestinians.  You're not helping them actually build a state.
JIM GLASSMAN:
You're kind of annoyed at this term peace process.  And your point is that you don't want to concentrate on the process itself, but rather on building up a state?  Is that why you don't like that term--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
That-- that's right, largely.  I mean, look at it this way.  If you have a conference, and the goal is let's get a deal, make them sign something.  And it fails, as it failed for President Clinton at Camp David and as it failed for President Bush after Annapolis, you are left with nothing.  Or in the Clinton case, violence, less than nothing.

If you're building the institutions of the state, and you don't quite get to where you want to be in 2009 or '10 or '11, you don't have nothing.  You have whatever progress has been made.  You have moved the ball forward.  You have created a better Palestinian life.  The Palestinian economy in the West Bank grew, depending on who you ask, seven to 10 percent last year.  This is incredible.  Compare it to American, or for that matter, Israeli growth.  This is real progress.  And that's what we ought to be concentrating on.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And real progress is being made in the-- in the West Bank.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
It really is, you know.  One-- one of the funny things about the West Bank is very few Arab leaders have ever set foot there.  And they clearly think that it is, you know, Somalia or something like that, a huge disaster area.  But it isn't a disaster area.  It is a place whose economy is growing.  When you visit there, you don't feel like you're in some fourth world backwater.
JIM GLASSMAN:
Let's talk about settlements, because I remember when the Obama Administration took its first step on settlements.  And we'll get to what that was.  You-- you were very much strong-- you were very much opposed to that.  And you said that that's actually going to jeopardize things.  Explain.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Since 1967, Israel has been building in-- the West Bank, at one point in Gaza.  Of course, that's over now.  And in Jerusalem, which is under Israeli law, the capital of Israel.  It's not occupied territory.  In the Bush Administration, we reached a kind of agreement with Israel, under which they would build up and in but not out in the settlements.

In other words, no more land would be taken.  The idea was, let's not disadvantage the Palestinians by taking-- an olive grove or a road.  And let's not create a new issue for final settle-- status talks someday.  If you want to build for more people to live in the middle of a settlement, fine.  That doesn't hurt Palestinians.  I thought the Obama administration would accept that deal.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And by the way, let me interrupt you.  Was that deal accepted by the Palestinians?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
At the time it was.  And remember that--
JIM GLASSMAN:
But tacitly.  They didn't say, "Oh, well, we-- we like that deal."
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Tacitly and-- and they then negotiated for years after we made that agreement with Prime Minister Sharon.  They negotiated face to face with the Israelis.  Now the Obama administration comes in and says, "No, no, no, no, no, no, no.  We need an absolute, 100 percent freeze on construction in the West Bank settlements and in Jerusalem."

First problem-- it's almost impossible to impose that on any living community.  What does it mean if you want to put-- additional room on your house 'cause a kid comes back from college or 'cause you have a baby, that's against the law?  The-- even the definition of what a freeze means is-- is difficult.

Secondly, politics.  The-- Israel has a coalition government.  You would be asking that government to commit suicide if it tried to impose an absolute, 100 percent freeze in Israel's capital city.  But once we, the United States, said it, "We demand an absolute freeze."  Well, the Palestinians had demand it too.  How could they be, in a sense, less Palestinian than we were?  So they did demand it.  And they said, "Okay, we're not going to go to the table."
JIM GLASSMAN:
And why do you think-- the Obama Administration did it?  Was it-- did they see this as sort of low-hanging fruit, say, "Well, we're-- we're going to show that we're-- to some-- to Europeans, for example, even-handed.  We're going to-- we're going to do something to the Israelis and this is easy to do.  And we'll get 'em to back down on this."
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
You know, it's a very good question.  And I think part of the answer is, your-- the name of your show, Ideas in Action.  They had an idea.  The idea was that settlements are the major obstacle.  And settlements are destroying the possibility to have a Palestinian state someday.  It was a fallacious idea.  I would add to that that they had an improper or let's say-- inadequate understanding of Israeli politics.  They didn't seem to realize that no Israeli government would accept this kind of 100 percent freeze.
JIM GLASSMAN:
So your point is that-- that this idea that the Obama Administration put into action has actually hurt its own cause, or the-- certainly the cause of peace was sort of disrupted because the Palestinians who were talking to Israelis said, "Hold it.  Well, we can't be less Palestinian than the-- than the Administration is."

So now-- so now, let-- let's just-- let's just fast-forward to Vice-President Biden's trip to Israel.  And there, while he's there, there was an announcement that, "Hey, we're going to-- we're going to build more settlements."  And that was-- was that pot-- was that-- a provocation on the part of the Israelis?  I mean, why did that happen?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
It was a mistake on the part of the Israelis, but I think the vice-president quickly did what-- essentially what Secretary Rice did when this happened to her.  He told the Israeli privately, "This annoys me a lot.  You should not do this."  I have to say that, you know, this is a zoning question for Israelis.  It's a permitting process.  We have this in every state and every city in the United States.

First you buy the land.  Then you get a construction permit.  Then you file your plans.  Then you start-- Netanyahu did not do this to-- make trouble for Vice-President Biden.  What is striking to me is-- Washington decided to make a crisis out of this.  Biden had kind of put it to bed after two or three days-- in March, as I recall.  And then all of a sudden, Washington says, "We condemn the Israeli actions--"
JIM GLASSMAN:
And that's-- as a diplomat, you understand.  That's-- that's a strong word.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Really the most-- it is the strongest word in the diplomat's vocabulary.  Usually you say, "We are-- we are deeply troubled.  We are seriously troubled."  Condemned is generally reserved for-- acts of murder and terror, not acts of city planning.
JIM GLASSMAN:
So-- so who was behind that?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, I think the president was behind it.  I mean, it does seem to me that-- that in the end, this is his policy.  He's not somebody who's kind of-- you know, involved in 12 other things and pays no attention to this and-- I think the president decided to escalate the crisis with Netanyahu.
JIM GLASSMAN:
In order to-- to go back to your-- original theory, perhaps, bring down the coalition government just as-- just as the Bush Administration certainly didn't want to have anything to do with Arafat.  And I don't know whether-- whether you had anything to do with Arafat's--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Actually, the-- the better analogy--
JIM GLASSMAN:
--Demise.  (LAUGHTER)
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
But the political demise, the-- the--
JIM GLASSMAN:
Political demise.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
The better analogy, I think, is to the-- Bush-- 41 Administration-- and Clinton, when they really acted against Netanyahu.  And at one point, really did bring Netanyahu down.  I can't tell you what was in the president's mind.  It's a reasonable theory that he thought, "We'll continue to escalate the tension.  Sooner or later, this coalition in Israel will crack."

It's probably wrong politically, because it's true, you know, most Israelis think the job of the prime minister is to get along with the Americans.  And if the prime minister doesn't, he gets blamed.  But in this case, there seems to be an exception.  Israelis seem to think, "You know, this really isn't Bebe's fault.  It really seems the American administration is looking for trouble, so let's not blame Bebe."  And his-- his popularity has really not declined because of this.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And the popularity of the American president is at-- a pretty low level in--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Single-- single digits in Israel.  It's-- which is con-- really amazing.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And that's because the Israelis view this president as favoring the Palestinians more than other presidents?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Yeah, it's certainly not a partisan thing.  They're used to 16 years of Clinton and George W. Bush, of a particularly warm relation with the US.  I think this began with the Cairo speech.  They noted the president went to Cairo, but then didn't go to visit them.
JIM GLASSMAN:
So it wasn't the speech.  It was the fact that he went to Cairo and didn't kind of balance it by going to Israel.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Point one.  Point two, they didn't like the speech.  The speech--
JIM GLASSMAN:
And what didn't they like about the speech?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well--
JIM GLASSMAN:
Gee, everybody liked that speech.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, no.  Not everybody in Israel, anyway.  Maybe everybody here did.  He-- first of all, he addressed the Islamic world without addressing them, so that kind of bothered them because they wondered, "Uh-oh, are we going to be sacrificed here on the altar of improved American relations with the Islamic world?"  They also didn't like his version of the history of Israel.  His version was there was the Holocaust.  Then Israel was created to make up for it.  Their version of the history of Israel starts with Abraham and Moses and King David.  And not with 1933.
JIM GLASSMAN:
Okay.  Now, does this-- is this-- irreparable?  Is-- is the fact that you have a president who came in and made the mistake that-- that you believe he made and really has set things on-- a kilter?  Is that something that's irreparable?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
No.  But it's going to be hard.  The president could go to Israel.  It wouldn't be like a trip a year ago, before this kind of-- you might call it bias against him set in.  But he could go to Israel and make a speech to the people of Israel, to the Knesset.  That would-- that would make a difference.

He could change the policy.  And stop, in a sense, piling all of these problems on Israel rather than the Palestinians, 'cause Israelis note, they're being asked to do a lot.  The Palestinians are not really being asked to do much.  He could change personnel.  Israelis, at this point, don't have much confidence in I would say Senator Mitchell.  They have more confidence in some other people in the administration.  So it's not too late.  But it-- it frankly, it does remind me a bit of the Carter Administration, that is, where things went downhill and then they went downhill some more.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And Senator Mitchell, of course, the former Senate majority leader is the guy who brokered the peace deal in-- in--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Northern Ireland.
JIM GLASSMAN:
--You know, Northern Ireland.  You'd think he'd be able to do something here.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, he-- he-- may have known that situation better than this situation.  Or he may have had-- what Israelis would view as more neutral views of that situation.  It's going to be very hard, I think, at this point for him to regain with Israelis-- the sense that-- he's completely even-handed, because they view him as the father of the-- these-- confrontations over settlements.
JIM GLASSMAN:
Let's talk in more general terms.  I mean, is it-- is it possible for Palestinians and Israelis to co-exist, in a way that is not murderous and perhaps even productive without some kind of explicit peace deal?  Let's say, over the next 20 years.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, that's a long period of time for this not to be resolved. And I think Palestinians and Israelis have agreed they want to separate.  That is, they don't want to live in one state, and they don't want to live, of course, under Israeli occupation in the West Bank.  They want to govern themselves.  That has to happen sometime over the next-- few years, let's say.

I don't think you're going to see the kind of-- Israelis and Palestinians living together in peace the way President-- Shimon Peres of Israel used to talk about it.  I think-- I think they'll live apart in peace.  I don't think that fence is ever really going to come down.  But I do think most Israelis, the vast majority of Israelis have agreed now, the goal is to get out of the West Bank and have Palestinian self-government.  And it ought to be possible to achieve that.  I do think the-- Iranian support for Hamas and Hezbollah and the most radical elements of that society is-- is going to make it harder.
JIM GLASSMAN:
So-- in 2007, when your administration decided to have a peace-- peace talks, peace process--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Right.
JIM GLASSMAN:
--In Annapolis, how'd you feel about that?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
I thought it was a mistake.  I thought Annapolis was a mistake because-- obviously, President Bush didn't agree with me.  I thought they were not going to reach an agreement.  It seemed to me that-- that if you look at the terms that were out there, neither Israeli nor Palestinian leaders were ready to accept those terms.  I thought we were putting the emphasis in the wrong place, again, on conferences and conference tables and flying flags and all, rather than on the pretty-- undramatic but critically important work of building institutions on the ground.
JIM GLASSMAN:
You know-- do you think that the Palestinians, though, have some legitimate complaints?  I mean, for example, you know, when I went to the West Bank, and I-- I completely agree with you about-- you know, Ramallah was not the city I thought it was going to be.  (LAUGHTER) You know, it's-- it's a regular city.

But-- but I-- I did hear complaints, which sounded like me to be justifiable about people kind of being humiliated at checkpoints, not being able to-- to do the most basic kinds of things, moving from one place to another.  And really impeding commerce on the West Bank, which you and I both want to improve.  So, is-- isn't there progress that needs to be made there?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, there is.  There's no question.  There has been progress under Netanyahu, came in talking about economic peace.  And he has, in fact, removed a good number of obstacles and checkpoints.  And we ought to be talking to them about removing more.  Of course, the problem is when the top of your list is, "I demand a 100 percent construction freeze," you argue about that.  If you had gone in and said, "You know, I'm not going to ask you for anything crazy, but I want this one checkpoint removed and I want that.  And I want-- more ability for Israeli Arabs to shop in the West Bank."  Things that are doable and that help the economy.  We would be and Palestinians in the West Bank would be ahead of where we are now.  We put the emphasis in the wrong place.
JIM GLASSMAN:
So it should have been more on-- on the mobility, rather than on whether you can build up or not.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Mobility, economy-- of course, the bottom line here is-- for the Israelis is security.  And you are taking a risk when you ask them to take risks, because if what happens is there's then a terrorist attack, they'll come back to you and said, "You told us to take that checkpoint away.  And now look-- look at what happened."  I think they can do more.  And I think they could have done more.  And a lot of Palestinians, I have to say, during the Annapolis period, 2007, 2008, actually said to me and others privately, "You're putting the emphasis on these conferences, but that's not what we need.  What we need is for life on the West Bank to get better."
JIM GLASSMAN:
How do the Israelis view the Iranian threat?  In other words, what are the chances that the-- that the Israelis are going to do something about the Iranian threat if we don't do anything about it?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
I think the chance is real.  I would put it, personally, at above 50-50.  I think they really mean it when they say an Iranian nuclear weapon is unacceptable.  Britain, France, England, Germany, the US, China, Russia, everybody says unacceptable.  I don't think we really mean unacceptable.  I think we really mean not good.  I think the Israelis mean unacceptable.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And-- and it-- it's not simply the fact that the Iranians might use that weapon against them.  It's that-- that that empowers Hamas?  I mean, sort of play that out for us--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Yeah, it's combination of things.  One, the direct threat.  The threat, if you will, of a second holocaust, if they ever decided to use the weapon or give it to a terrorist group to use.  Secondly, it-- it empowers Iran.  Everybody in the Middle East is looking, who's up and who's down.  And the Americans and-- and Israelis who have said, "That's unacceptable," would be down, if it actually then eventuated, whereas Iran would be the rising power.  So that helps all the radicals.  It helps Syria.  It helps Hezbollah.  It helps Hamas.  And it hurts the Palestinian moderates.  And I think Israelis are well aware of that.

And finally, what kind of society can you build for the future in Israel?  How can you get immigrants to come there?  How can you get investment there, when people are looking at the threat of an Iranian nuclear weapon, which, as we're discussing it now, would be in existence.  Today you get Ahmadinejad threatening Israel in the most despicable way, "Wipe 'em off the map," and so forth, just words.  If that man has a nuclear weapon, those words become really quite terrifying.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And what should the United States do about this threat to Israel?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Well, I think--
JIM GLASSMAN:
And to the rest of the world?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
It is-- it is-- it is a threat to the American position in the entire Middle East and therefore in the entire world.  American's strategic credibility is deeply damaged, I think, if after all these speeches we've given, we let them get a nuclear weapon.  I think there's-- still a possibility this year to do the kind of sanctions that would so threaten or so damage the regime in Iran, which is clearly a very-- unpopular regime at home, that they would back away from the nuclear program, at least for a period of years.

Possible.  I don't think we're going to get those sanctions, because-- mostly because of the Russians and Chinese.  But that's -- that's the best way to do this.  Threaten and use sanctions to get a diplomatic resolution.  If that fails, my own view is that-- well, you know, John McCain said it during the 2008 campaign.  "The only thing worse than bombing Iran is an Iranian bomb."  I would favor an American or Israeli use of force to prevent that regime from getting a nuclear weapon.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And what do you think the chances are that we'll be able to do anything to stop them from getting that weapon, short of using force?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
It doesn't look to me as if we're going to get powerful enough sanctions.  So while I think the-- theoretically, the possibility exists.  I would bet against it.
JIM GLASSMAN:
You know, you have-- your administration had many years, and my administration too, to do something about this.  And yet you were unable to do anything about it.  Has-- has-- is the fact that there is a green movement-- does that make it easier for some of this change that you're talking about to be effective?
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Yes.  And one of the other things the US should be doing now is massive support for the green movement.
JIM GLASSMAN:
The green movement being the-- the-- the counter regime--
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
Internal opposition, which had the election stolen from them-- in 2009.  It's-- it-- it is a different Iran from the Iran that George W. Bush faced.  People used to say, "Well, you may not like it, but there's no real internal opposition to the Ayatollahs.  They're pretty popular.  The opposition comes from a bunch of students, not serious."  That is clearly no longer the case.  There is a huge internal opposition to this regime.

Basically, I think, it-- it-- it is hanging on only by virtue of being a police state at this point.  And it will go.  The problem is the two timelines.  The nuclear timeline appears to be a lot shorter than the timeline for a regime change in Tehran.  One of the hot questions, I would say, in the middle of 2010 is, if there were a military strike on Iran to destroy and delay its-- nuclear weapons program, what's the political impact in Iran?

A lot of people tell you, "Oh, it gives the Ayatollahs a lease on life.  There will be a rally around the flag."  In fact, I'm struck by the fact that people said that two and three years ago, when there was no big internal opposition visible.  And they're still saying it.  I don't understand why that makes the Ayatollahs look better.  But you know, obviously, this is something the-- US government, the Israeli government, is going to wade carefully.
JIM GLASSMAN:
Thank you, Elliott Abrams.
ELLIOTT ABRAMS:
You're welcome.
JIM GLASSMAN:
And that's it for this edition of Ideas in Action.  For more on this episode and other shows, go to www.ideasinactiontv.com.  I'm Jim Glassman.  Thanks for watching.
ANNOUNCER:
For more information, visit us at ideasinactiontv.com.  Funding for ideas in action is provided by Investor's Business Daily.  Every stock market cycle is led by America's never-ending stream of innovative new companies and inventions.  Investor's Business Daily helps investors find these new leaders as they emerge.  More information is available at investors.com.  This program is a production of Grace Creek Media and the George W. Bush Institute, which are solely responsible for its content.
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1 Comment

I just watched your program with Mr. Abrams. His insights, especially regarding accomplishments on the ground between Palestinians’ and Israelis’ mobility and economy vs conference progress were truly enlightening. Seems politicians, shortsightedly, want to show the soundbite public instantaneous accomplishment in an area embattled for thousands of years. Also, with Israel's growing high-tech economy, assuming the leaders of surrounding countries are not trying to eradicate Israel, and are trying to truly help their people, they would want to work with and share in Israel's great high-tech economic success. Sorry for my naïveté of the players. Logic from afar is easier to discuss than being amidst the long-standing hatred and trying to change status quo. Sadat tried and succeeded in part. Hopefully some future leader will recall, memorialize and rejuvenate his attempts successfully.

Then you discussed Iran, and Mr. Abrams stated that he believed that real hard sanctions could work if the Chinese and Russians would participate, in addition to the other key industrialized countries. It would seem this 'enlightened' and progressive U.S. administration would have the intelligence somehow to demonstrate to both countries that whatever benefits they gain from the status quo, they will be significantly reduced or wiped out if there is a war. They must be more interested in seeing the U.S. and maybe the administration be squeezed into a box. Anyone mentioned the period before World War II to them, and history tending to repeat itself?

What I don't understand, and perhaps this is being studied behind closed doors, and of course cannot be stated publicly - why don't we, Israel and other allies find ways to aid in the assassination of Ahmadinejad and the ruling Mullahs/Imams. If the majority of Iranians are against them along with most of the world, this would seem much more efficient and an assured way of avoiding a very deadly war, and reducing future hardship. I suppose it should not be done when he comes to the U.N., but I have got to believe this is option 1. Please tell me why I am wrong, in logic, rationale or other reason, if so? From a strategic perspective I hope this is a prime option which we don't hear about until it is accomplished. From a tactical perspective maybe they can study all the failed attempts on Hitler and minimize future failure for the benefit of mankind.


Thank you,
Martin Sklar

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Elliott Abrams

Former Deputy National Security Adviser on the Middle East

Elliott Abrams is a senior fellow for Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and former Deputy National Security Adviser on the Middle East under President George W. Bush. He's written a series of articles in The Weekly Standard about the Obama Administration's efforts to revive Middle East peace talks.

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