"Particularly misguided and damaging has been the oft-repeated demand that Palestinians offer territorial concessions that match the "painful concessions" Israel's leaders have said they are prepared to make. It is a formulation that reveals a profound misunderstanding or deliberate distortion of the history of this conflict, one that will inevitably produce a one-sided outcome that is unjust and untenable. Palestinians have not asked Israel to make territorial concessions--i.e., give up any of the territory Israel controlled between the armistice agreement of 1949 and the 1967 war--nor has Israel ever indicated it would under any circumstances consider doing so. What Palestinians have asked is that Israel return Palestinian territory on which Israel has illegally established settlements and to which it has transferred its own population, in violation of treaty obligations and international law. To describe the return of illegally expropriated Palestinian territory as Israeli "concessions" is to compromise the Palestinian case before negotiations even begin.
Indeed, it is only Palestinians who have made painful concessions. As a condition for Israel's acceptance of the Oslo Accords, the PLO formally agreed to recognize the legitimacy of territory acquired by Israel in the war of 1948. It is a concession that reduced by fully one half the territory originally assigned to the Arab population of Palestine by the UN partition plan of 1947. Given that major Palestinian territorial concession, any new initiative that does not provide that negotiations begin at the pre-1967 armistice line and expects Palestinians to relinquish (other than in equal land swaps) even more of the 22 percent of the territory that has been left them will be stillborn."
And before dismissing this fellow as some fanatic antisemitic raver on the order of say er uh... Jimmy Carter... know that the author is:
Henry Siegman, director of the U.S./Middle East Project in New York, a visiting research professor at the Sir Joseph Hotung Middle East Program, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He is a former national director of the American Jewish Congress and of the Synagogue Council of America.