Israel's new Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he will seek peace with his Arab neighbors this second time he holds the post. But the path to peace that he envisions may not be the same as that envisioned by the United States.
Netanyahu, viewed by many as a hard liner against Arab terrorists and avowed enemies of Israel failed to utter the words Palestinian state. Recent U.S. administrations, including the current one, both Democratic and Republican, have pushed for a two-state solution.
So the new prime minister is a bit of an enigma at this point. Presumably time will tell whether his actions satisfy those who are increasingly dissatisfied with the lack of progress in peace talks and those who are still hopeful that the establishment of a Palestinian state will satisfy aspirations of Palestinian people.
The problem those who favor the latter have, of course, is that the Palestinian territories are divided, both geographically and politically. With Hamas, still bent on the destruction of Israel, controlling the Gaza. And the rival Palestinian Authority, which at least favors talks with Israel, in charge of the West Bank.
Perhaps the best Netanyahu, or any other prime minister, can hope for is making Israel as secure as possible. While not setting expectations for peace so high as to set one up for disappointment.
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