You purged your “US officials optimistic about direct talks” from your website. It must fill revisionists with envy when they see how easily you rewrite history. Let’s try to find out why. In any case the reason cannot be that it was unappreciated or unsellable – 4,680 hits when we googled the title.
The structure of the report is very interesting, in four sections.
+ The first four paragraphs are problemless, which is an accomplishment.
+ Then follow a number of paragraphs where US officials are quoted voicing their unfounded optimism that must have created the headline:
– characterized Mitchell’s talks as “serious and positive”
– after today’s meeting, we are closer to reaching that point than we were yesterday
– it was possible that an announcement about direct talks could be made as early as
– We’re almost there.
+ And then we get a number of twists and variations to the truth:
– “After nearly two decades of intermittent, inconclusive talks, the Palestinians are wary of entering open-ended negotiations.” – Left out is that the Palestinians got concession after concession (a lot of autonomy on the West Bank, total Autonomy in Gaza), and that the Jews got thousands of killed and maimed people as reward; these “inconclusive talks” paid off very well for the Palestinians who themselves did not deliver anything; then to portray them as “wary” is the greatest chutzpah in the world.
– “Direct talks between Abbas and Netanyahu’s predecessor, Ehud Olmert, broke off in 2008.” – Not true. Olmert had to step down and the Palestinian leadership made a strategic decision to ignore Netanyahu and write him off as an extremist. They did not “break off” – they were broken off.
– “Since May, Mitchell has been shuttling between Abbas and Netanyahu, but has made little headway.” – With the Palestinians.
In recent weeks, the Obama administration has been pushing hard to move to direct talks. – Pressing the Palestinians hard.
But we are used to such AP falsifications, so that can’t be the reason to withdraw the report.
+ Then the report rounds off with some lines about the Ramadan, totally out of place here.
We conclude that withdrawal of the report must have been aimed at sparing clueless US officials further embarrassment. AP as mouthpiece of the State Department.