Finnish FM, Alexander Stubb:
Stockholm. EU foreign ministers on Friday expressed optimism in the Middle East peace process, when they met in an informal meeting in Stockholm. “I felt optimism in the room” Foreign Minister Alexander Stubb, said after the first session. The “USA has a new management and has invested a lot in the matter”. “There are signs that the peace process was brought back into circulation in September.” […]“Alexander Stubb stated frankly. “The construction of settlements simply must stop.” According to him, it is important that the EU will remain united and support the mediation efforts of the United States.”
“If the United States fails to force a change in Israeli policy it will look foolish. But what if it succeeds? The PA will just move to the next item on its list: refusing to negotiate with Israel unless Netanyahu explicitly endorses a “two-state” solution.
And the PA will do or give nothing in exchange for a cessation of Israeli settlement construction. Neither will the Arab states. They will not help it more on the Iran issue or meet any other U.S. request.
On the contrary, they will say that now the United States has demonstrated it can get Israel to do what it wants. Thus, Washington has no excuse for not ordering Israel to withdraw from all the West Bank, agree to an independent Palestinian state without preconditions, and do whatever else the Arab regimes want. Indeed PA leader Mahmoud Abbas said that in his interviews while in Washington.
In short, the United States will have reaped zero advantage from achieving its current number-one priority on the peace process. “