Now comes reality onto the stage to darken the dreams of would-be peacemakers. As shrewd old Talleyrand also once said, "I know where there is more wisdom than is found in Napoleon, Voltaire, or all the ministers present and to come -- in public opinion." So consider this dismal data from the authoritative polling of the 2007 Pew Global Attitudes Project. The report tabulated the response to this key question: "Which statement comes closest to your opinion? 1) A way can be found for the state of Israel to exist so that the rights and needs of the Palestinian people are taken care of OR, 2) the rights and needs of the Palestinian people cannot be taken care of as long as the state of Israel exists?"
The specific percentages are as follows, with the key results being, by 77 to 16 percent, Palestinians don't believe they can live side by side with Israel, while, by 61 to 31 percent, Israelis do believe they can live side by side with a Palestinian state. Note that all the Arab states are very negative and all the Western states (plus Israel) are quite positive for a two-state solution.
--United States: 1) 67 percent, 2) 12 percent.
--France: 1) 82 percent, 2) 16 percent.
--Germany: 1) 80 percent, 2) 11 percent.
--Sweden: 1) 65 percent, 2) 12 percent.
--Britain: 1) 60 percent, 2) 12 percent.
--Israel: 1) 61 percent, 2) 31 percent.
--Morocco: 1) 23 percent, 2) 47 percent.
--Kuwait: 1) 21 percent, 2) 73 percent.
--Egypt: 1) 18 percent, 2) 80 percent.
--Jordan: 1) 17 percent, 2) 78 percent.
--Palestinian territories: 1) 16 percent, 2) 77 percent.
Keep in mind, also, that after Egyptian President Anwar Sadat signed a Sinai peace treaty with Israel, in October 1981 he was assassinated during a military parade in Cairo. A fatwa authorizing the assassination had been issued by Omar Abdel-Rahman, a cleric later convicted in the U.S. for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
It would take an unusually courageous leader to sign a peace treaty and his own death warrant in one document. And lest there be any doubt as to the acceptability of a peace treaty that doesn't include refugees' being given the right to return (which would turn Israel into a Muslim-majority, rather than Jewish-majority, state), consider the writing this week in the Los Angeles Times of Mustafa Barghouthi, a member of the Palestinian Parliament, a candidate for president in 2005, and currently secretary-general of the Palestinian National Initiative:
"Palestinians in the occupied territories have no standing to sign away the rights of the Palestinian citizens of Israel in order to get Israel to the negotiating table. To tell the truth, we don't believe that Israel can be a true democracy and an exclusivist Jewish state at the same time."
As long as fewer than 2 in 10 Arabs, both Palestinian and all others, believe in Israel's right to exist as a nation with a Jewish majority, there can be no successful peace based on a two-state solution. That is the reality that no diplomacy can change.
Blankley, who had been suffering from stomach cancer, died Saturday night at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, his wife, Lynda Davis, said Sunday.
In his long career as a political operative and pundit, his most visible role was as a spokesman for and adviser to Gingrich from 1990 to 1997. Gingrich became House Speaker when Republicans took control of the U.S. House of Representatives following the 1994 midterm elections.