Persian Carpet* For Sale...Again

Media Release - May 13, 1999

Excerpted from Middle East Newsline
Special Report - U.S. Has Big Plans For Barak
By Steve Rodan

The United States has high expectations from Ehud Barak, the Israeli favorite for prime minister.

U.S. diplomatic sources said Clinton administration and State Department officials have drafted plans to begin multi-track peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians and Israel and Syria. They said Washington will press for accelerated talks so that peace agreements can be signed while President Bill Clinton is still in office. Clinton is scheduled to step down in January 2001.

"The expectations from Barak is similar to those the United States had of Yitzhak Rabin when he was elected in 1992," a U.S. diplomatic source said. "At least in the initial stage, there will be a big push to move things forward on both the Israeli-Palestinian and the Israeli-Syrian tracks."

... U.S. government sources said the administration is prepared to demonstrate generosity to Barak. They said this could include a decision to allow a congressional effort to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, $1.2 billion in additional defense funds in connection with the Wye River accords and the release of Jonathan Pollard, sentenced to life in prison for spying on behalf of Israel...

* Washington has routinely sold the same Persian carpet, (Pollard), over and over again to Jerusalem for increasingly higher prices, but never delivers. See The Washington Shuk - Media Release - May 12, 1999.