Israel's decision to approve 3,000 new homes on occupied territory drew sharp condemnation from European allies on Monday, with at least three governments summoning ambassadors to express their disapproval of an action they say undermines an already troubled peace process.
The Israeli envoy to Paris was called to a meeting late Monday morning, according to a statement from the French foreign ministry spokesman, Philippe Lalliot. France, which was the first major European country to announce support for the Palestinian effort to win recognition at the U.N., also sent a letter to the Israeli government, calling the settlement decision "a considerable obstacle to the two-state solution."
Britain and Sweden also summoned the Israeli ambassadors, and Germany said the decision would hurt Israel's ability to negotiate a long-term peace agreement.
None of the European governments openly threatened any concrete measures to punish Israel.
Well of course not, but now the chessboard is set for the US to make a few moves and give Israel some concessions of some sort and look like the good guy. If you think Israel can freely ignore the Obama administration (which they do), they openly mock Hollande and France (which they will.)
The only question is how much Israel will get in exchange for putting these building plans on hold for a while. Considering the UN vote, it may take quite a bit to soothe Netanyahu this time around. It's very likely that Israel will get some serious concessions or some new toys from the Pentagon, or both...but President Obama is going to have to open up the vault in a big way.
For example, I wonder how much of the $120 million in tax revenue the Israelis are holding for the PA they will be allowed to simply keep?
All I know is that Israel will get something nice this holiday season, and the Palestinians will get the back of Netanyahu's hand.