Seriously, pups, the Peace Farce is officially over…

Official: No new peace talks planned

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have no immediate plans to hold new talks, after the Palestinian negotiating team offered its resignation in protest of Israeli settlement plans.

A PLO official told Ma’an on Wednesday that the US-brokered talks were suspended in practice, with no date set for a new round of negotiations.

The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that President Mahmoud Abbas would attempt to coax his two senior negotiators into returning but it was unclear if they would.

The negotiators, Saeb Erekat and Muhammad Shtayyeh, tendered their resignations last week after Israel announced plans to step up settlement construction in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem.

On Wednesday, Abbas told Egyptian CBC television that he would keep negotiating with Israel even if the officials declined to rejoin the talks.

“Either we can convince it to return, and we’re trying with them, or we form a new delegation,” he said, according to Reuters.

Reuters TV quoted Erekat as confirming the talks were frozen.

“In reality, the negotiations stopped last week in light of the settlement announcements last week,” he said.

From the UN…

Settlement plans threaten renewed hopes for Israeli-Palestinian peace, UN envoy warns

A senior United Nations official today voiced his growing concern at the series of settlement announcements made by Israel over the past weeks and stressed the need to avoid actions that negatively impact ongoing Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

“At this sensitive moment, it is imperative to avoid negative actions and support ongoing talks to preserve the remaining chances of achieving a two-State solution in the interest of Israelis and Palestinians alike,” said a statement issued by the Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, who also voiced his deep concern at recent violent incidents.

On Tuesday, Israel reportedly announced plans to build 20,000 new settler homes in the West Bank, prompting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to threaten an end to peace talks that resumed a few months ago after a three-year hiatus.

The statement by Mr. Serry noted that settlement activity cannot be reconciled with the goal of a negotiated two-State solution, and reiterated the UN position that settlements are against international law and an obstacle to peace.

Against this backdrop, the Special Coordinator met today separately with the Israeli and Palestinian negotiators.

“He understands from his discussion with chief negotiator [Tzipi] Livni and other Israeli officials that yesterday’s decision to plan a large number of settlement units has been stopped,” said the statement.

Direct talks between the Israeli and Palestinian sides resumed this past August, after stalling in 2010 owing to Israel’s refusal to extend its freeze on settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territory.

I very much doubt that ‘sudden’ reversal in Bibi’s settlement schemes…

Netanyahu vows to build ‘thousands more homes’ in settlements

A day after forcing the Construction and Housing Ministry to “reconsider” preliminary work toward building 24,000 housing units beyond the Green Line, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Wednesday that building in settlements would continue, but had to be done wisely.

“In recent months, we built thousands of homes in Judea and Samaria, and in the coming months we plan to build thousands more,” Netanyahu said in a Knesset debate on housing prices. “It was never easy, but we did it responsibly despite international pressure.”

Continuing along with Bibi’s perfidy…

Israel warns of war from Iran “bad deal”, sees big sanctions cut

Israeli leader warns of war if powers drop sanctions

* Government in Israel sees deal easing sanctions 40 pct

* Western diplomats say no deal yet, negotiations secret

* Obama, Hollande insist they can keep Iran non-nuclear

* Kerry warns Congress new sanctions could wreck talks (Adds details on offer, Obama, Hollande, Kerry comments)

…Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on Wednesday that a “bad deal” with Iran on its nuclear programme could lead to war and his aides challenged U.S. assertions to have offered Tehran only “modest” relief from sanctions.

As details emerged of a Western proposal that could let Iran sell oil and gold in return for curbs on its nuclear activities, an Israeli minister said the deal would negate up to 40 percent of the impact of sanctions, reducing pressure on Tehran to halt a programme the West says has a military motive.

Israel, which calculated the value of direct sanctions relief on offer at $15-20 billion, has lobbied hard against any such deal and says the United States, its closest ally, is being misled by overtures of detente coming from Tehran.

To be sure… ‘Netanyahu open to interim Iran deal — if the terms are right’

Now, the ever intrepid, Pepe Escobar, really spelled it out…

Why France is playing ‘stupid’ on Iran

US Secretary of State John Kerry has famously stated the US “is not blind” or “stupid” in its push to clinch a historic deal over the Iranian nuclear program. [1] So now that the world has been informed, he must, cryptically, have been talking about France.

The failed Geneva negotiations this past weekend over a temporary nuclear deal at least carried the merit of revealing who is really blocking it: the axis of fear and loathing composed by the Likudniks in Israel, the House of Saud, and the Francois Hollande administration in France.

Torrents of bytes have already detailed how Israel routinely hijacks US foreign policy. Here’s yet one more graphic demonstration of how Wag the Dog works. Last Friday evening, President Barack Obama called Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu asking him not to derail Geneva. Bibi then duly picked up the phone and called, in succession, British Prime Minister David Cameron, Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Hollande and asked them … to derail Geneva.

Hollande was the only one who followed Bibi’s marching orders. And all this after Kerry himself had been lectured by Bibi at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport on Friday morning.

Flash forward to the coda, early Sunday morning. Not by accident, Wendy Sherman, the lead US negotiator on the Iranian nuclear dossier, a certified Israeli-firster and borderline racist, [2] flew from Geneva straight to Israel to duly “reassure” her true leader, Bibi, that no deal would be clinched…

Interestingly… US Backtracks: Iran Not to Blame for Lack of Deal Officials Insist Deal Was a ‘Near Miss’

Now, to be sure pups, the Israeli Lobby is just as effective in Europe, France, and, in all their Parliament(s), as our Congress… EU lawmakers urge rethink on ‘guidelines’ with Israel

And we’re certainly not out of the woods… Neocons Still Hoping for US-Iran Clash

Now, here’s an excellent interview with a former IAEA inspector…

I like how Ray Kelley emphasized that Parchin red herring…!

In wrapping up, Flynt and Hillary Mann-Leverett, get to the real root of the problem…

Obama’s Refusal to Respect Iran’s Sovereign and Treaty Rights Continues to Thwart Diplomacy, Leaving America on the Self-Defeating Path to War

Notwithstanding France’s simultaneously arrogant and craven grandstanding over Iran’s Arak heavy water reactor, the main reason for the failure of last week’s nuclear talks between the Islamic Republic and the P5+1 was the Obama administration’s imperious refusal to acknowledge Tehran’s right to enrich uranium under international safeguards. On this point, we want to highlight a recent post by Dan Joyner on Arms Control Law, titled, “Scope, Meaning and Juridical Implication of the NPT Article IV(1) Inalienable Right.” {…}

Dan’s work on these issues is both breathtakingly clear and, as far as we are concerned, definitive. (For more of his analysis on the illegality of Security Council resolutions calling on Iran to suspend uranium enrichment, we refer everyone to his brilliant article, “The Security Council as Legal Hegemon,” published last year in the Georgetown Journal of International Law, see here.)

More immediately, Dan’s work underscores an important reality: the Obama administration’s hegemonically abusive refusal to recognize Iran’s right to safeguarded enrichment is not just diplomatically and strategically counter-productive—it is illegal.

*gah*