The Friedmometer tracks left-of-center conventional wisdom about the state of peace in the land between the river and the sea through the eyes of Thomas Friedman.
When last we weighed in, Friedman was mostly blaming Israel for the current stagnancy of the peace process. His column today on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by no means exculpates or excuses Israel, but it does focus almost exclusively on the need for Palestinians to take meaningful action. Emphasis on meaningful: nonviolent resistance is all well and good, Friedman argues, as long as it is coupled with a realistic plan—Friedman literally wants maps cited—for dividing the land on the basis of the pre-1967 lines, with land swaps.
Unabated, disruptive Palestinian civil disobedience in the West Bank, coupled with a map delineating a deal most Israelis would buy, is precisely what would make Israelis feel morally insecure but strategically secure and revive the Israeli peace camp. It is the only Palestinian strategy Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu fears, but it is one that he is sure Palestinians would never adopt. He thinks it’s not in their culture. Will they surprise him?
You get the sense that this would also surprise Thomas Friedman, no?
Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.