WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) made this statement today following remarks given by Secretary John Kerry about the path to Middle East peace.
“While I support a two-state solution, an independent Palestinian state coexisting with a secure Israel, the one and only Jewish state, I do not believe under the current construct such an outcome is possible. The biggest impediment to a two-state solution is not boundary lines or the right of return, it is the fact that the Palestinians are hopelessly divided and a large percentage of the Palestinian population is represented by Hamas. Until that changes, the peace process is dead and a chance for a two-state solution is a fantasy rather than reality.
“While I appreciate Secretary Kerry’s enthusiasm, I am getting weary of plans and proposals that are at best fanciful and worse delusional. Given the current state of discord and dysfunction among the Palestinians, a two-state solution is impossible until fundamental change occurs in Palestine.
“What John Kerry fails to appreciate, is that the Palestinians are in complete disarray when it comes to acting like a state. A two-state solution would require two parties capable of reaching an agreement and executing it. I do not believe that the Palestinians under the current construct could deliver on any agreement reached. Almost forty percent of the Palestinian population lives under the control of Hamas – one of the most vicious terrorist groups on the planet.
“I wish Secretary Kerry and President Obama would stop pushing Israel to negotiate against themselves. The only way the peace process can be restarted is for the Palestinians to hold elections and be governed by a single entity that rejects terrorism. That is not the current situation and until that day arrives, pushing Israel to restart the peace process is folly.”