REPORT: CONDI RICE BOOK CLAIMS LIVNI OPPOSED OLMERT PEACE OFFER TO ABBAS
In a new book, former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice claims that an unprecedented Israeli peace offer to the Palestinians was opposed by Tzipi Livni, then Israel's foreign minister.
Livni, who has pushed the Netanyahu government to engage in peace talks with the Palestinians -- even while Ramallah undermines Israel internationally and campaigns for one state solution at home -- told Rice that Olmert's plan would fail because he had "no standing" in the Jewish state.
According to Rice, Livini went even further, urging Mahmoub Abbas, head of the Palestinian Authority, not to endorse the offer.
At the time, late 2008, Olmert had already announced he would resign from office due to a scandal that erupted over his involvement in the building of a large Jerusalem housing development. President George W. Bush, too, was a lame duck head of state, but Rice writes that she believed Olmert's offer had created conditions wherein peace was in reach.
According to the report in Newsweek, Olmert told Rice:
Rice, who says the daring proposal "haunted" both Bush and herself, writes:
Olmert ultimately presented the map of his newly configured state to Abbas, who never pursued the offer despite two further U.S. attempts.
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