Boy, did I call that wrong. John Kerry is colluding with the Palestinians to put pressure on Israel, not learning that the Palestinians don’t want peace. I forgot that you can’t teach a man something he refuses to hear.
But in a surprise move on Tuesday, Abbas very publicly signed letters of accession to 15 international conventions, saying this was a response to Israel’s failure to release the last group of prisoners at the end of March.
Israel has not responded. Kerry canceled plans to return to the region on Wednesday, but also said it’s “completely premature” to write off the talks, while American officials hinted that the move was viewed as pressure tactic directed at Israel rather than the US.
There were some indications from Palestinian officials that Abbas’ unexpected step largely was intended as a pressure tactic. Keeping on good terms with the US and negotiating the terms of a Palestinian state with Israel remain pillars of Abbas’ political strategy.
I would not be at all surprised to learn that Kerry signed off on this action by Abbas, or at least, agrees with it because it puts added pressure on Israel.