Olmert (Israel's prime minister) just dropped the words "South Africa" to the whole world.
He pretty much said that if Israel didn't either
- negotiate a 2-state solution (that is, give up Palestinian territory) or
- grant equal voting rights & citizenship benefits to all the Arabs living in the territories they currently hold but don't give Arabs citizenship in,
Okay--what he actually said was that a failure to make #1 happen would result in that South Africa-like situation--which I guess means he doesn't believe there's a chance in heck that Israel's government would just do #2 on its own as part of making peace.
But anyway, wow.
He just came out and...said it.
(Now, so far the news is covering it with headlines that don't really reflect the significance of what the guy said. ABC comes closest of the search results in Yahoo News on israel south african (which I typed in, trying to find more than brief excerpts of his quotes). They headlined the story, "Olmert: Failure Will Lead to Israel Apartheid." Okay, I would've preferred a bit about failure to do what--for example, "Olmert: Failure To Reach Two-State Solution Will Lead to Israel Apartheid." But it's certainly better than the headlines that say, "Will Lead To End Of Israel." Sure, all the "end of Israel" headlines clarify in the article bodies that Olmert clarified that by "end of Israel" he meant "South-African-style struggle for a new governmental system," but geez Louise, why can't they just put something like that right in the headline itself?
Anyway, good headlines or bad headlines, Olmert explained his position pretty darned clearly, and I've gotta say, the prime minister of Israel saying, "Look, blah blah blah blah future like South Africa blah blah blah!" seems like a pretty f***ing big deal to come out of what I'd thought was going to be a token peace summit.)