Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Nov. 30 accused Israel of being suspicious of Palestinians and showing a “lack of generosity” and “lack of empathy” to them, saying there is “more that the Israelis need to do to really demonstrate that they do understand the pain of an oppressed people in their minds.”
“I’m not making excuses for the missed opportunities of the Israelis, or the lack of generosity, the lack of empathy that I think goes hand-in-hand with the suspicion,” Clinton said at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy in Washington, DC.
Reacting to Israel’s new construction plans in E1, a crucial strategic area just east of Jerusalem, Clinton said, “In light of today’s announcement, let me reiterate that this administration—like previous administrations—has been very clear with Israel that these activities set back the cause of a negotiated peace.”
Regarding the 2010 Israeli concession of a partial construction freeze in the West Bank, Clinton said she was not fully satisfied with that move.
The secretary of state said “there are more and more Israelis and Palestinians who just reject that idea out of hand: Why bother? Why try? We’ll never be able to reach an agreement with the other.” Clinton did acknowledge that over the last 20 years, she has “seen Israeli leaders make an honest, good-faith effort and not be reciprocated in the way that was needed.”