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Exceedingly strange dance in Jerusalem

Saudi Arabia warned it wouldn’t attend the US-sponsored Middle East peace conference if the issue of Jerusalem were not on the agenda. It is not clear why should anyone care about the opinion of Saudi Arabia which doesn’t even produce enough oil to cover its welfare costs, and is altogether negligible in economic and military terms.
But the issue of Jerusalem is ostensibly settled. Olmert offered to Abbas the Temple Mount and East Jerusalem all that the Muslims have asked for. Saudi Arabia is undoubtedly aware of Olmert’s offer.
It seems that Olmert plays with the Palestinians: he released hundreds of relatively unimportant prisoners who already served arduous sentences, removed non-critical security checkpoints, drags the issue of evacuating the outposts, avoids uprooting Hamas whose existence is Israel’s pledge against Palestinian statehood, and now presented Jerusalem to Arabs in the offer too generous to be true. Saudis, accordingly, demand that Olmert repeats his promise under the American auspices.
Israel will be hard pressed to partition her capital, and Olmert’s maneuvering might not save the day.

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