Tom Friedman is a star columnist at the New York Times with a big ego to boot. Last week in a piece titled Hamas, Netanyahu, and Mother Nature, he displayed his biased views on Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu and Israel. Friedman blames the Israeli government for doing nothing to advance peace, a charge that is totally misplaced. Every Israeli government since the Oslo Accords were signed on the White House lawn in 1993, has attempted to reach a peace deal with the Palestinians. Prime Minister Ehud Barak made far reaching concessions at Camp David in July, 2000.
Noted historian Benny Morris wrote in The New York Review of Books (June 21, 2002) that Israel proposed “the establishment of a demilitarized Palestinian state on some 92 percent of the West Bank and 100 percent of the Gaza Strip, with some territorial compensation for the Palestinians from pre-1967 Israeli territory; the dismantling of most of the settlements and the concentration of the bulk of the settlers inside the 8 percent of the West Bank to be annexed by Israel; the establishment of the Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem, in which some Arab neighborhoods would become sovereign Palestinian territory and others would enjoy “functional autonomy”; Palestinian sovereignty over half the Old City of Jerusalem (the Muslim and Christian quarters) and “custodianship,” though not sovereignty, over the Temple Mount; a return of refugees to the prospective Palestinian state though with no “right of return” to Israel proper; and the organization by the international community of a massive aid program to facilitate the refugees’ rehabilitation.”