The Israeli government realised last week that the Palestinian bid for upgraded diplomatic status at the United Nations was inevitable and that it would be better not to make a doomed effort to prevent it.
What a difference a year makes. Last September, Ed Miliband marked a definitive break with his party’s pro-Israel New Labour past by backing the Palestinian bid for an upgrade to their status at the United Nations. At the time this seemed precipitous and naive.
William Hague has announced that Britain will abstain in tomorrow’s UN vote on an upgrade for the Palestinian Authority to non-member observer status - unless the Palestinians meet three key conditions.
The Palestinian Authority has rebuffed calls to promise not prosecute Israel in the International Criminal Court if the UN General Assembly votes to upgrade the body to non-member observer status on Thursday.
American diplomatic efforts to soften the wording of the Palestinian resolution and introduce a clause in which the PA promises not to sue for war crimes has not been successful.
When Benjamin Netanyahu stood up at the United Nations General Assembly last September with a cartoonish drawing of a bomb designed to show how close Iran was getting nuclear weapons, close observers of Israel’s posture wondered why suddenly Israel had extended the deadline for action against Iran’s nuclear programme.