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Ehud Barak, former Minister of Defense and Prime Minister of Israel.

TEL AVIV (2014) / Interview with Ehud Barak.


- Tell us from Camp David in 2000, the meeting between Yasser Arafat, Bill Clinton and you?

- We had an answer to all problems – such as borders, security, refugees, Jerusalem. And we did not ask Arafat for a "take it or leave it". In a way, we gave him 92 percent of what he asked for, and we told him we were not asking him to accept this, just seeing this whole thing as a basis for negotiations with me and Clinton.

- When he refused this, and deliberately started terrorist acts, we learned something. Arafat was not ripe for peace at the time.

- One of the proposals was to connect the West Bank and Gaza?

- Yes, we saw that they needed an interconnection, so we planned an overhanging highway, about 48 kilometers, to the nearest point on the West Bank. This should not have any Israeli military border post or be guarded by Israeli police.

- All three of you were in Oslo in 1999, did you talk to Arafat then?

- Yes, in Oslo I took Arafat to the side then Clinton and we were there – 9 months before Camp David. I said to Arafat: This will be like parachuting at the same time, where you control my trigger, and I yours. Like jumping out for peace, and making sure both will land eventually.

- You knew Arafat privately, and are you one of the few Israeli politicians who speak Arabic?

- Yes, he was in my private home, and I with him. He knew my wife and daughters, and I knew several of his closest ones. At Camp David I also visited him in his cabin, we had Baklava together and discussed other things.

- Something else: Has not the economic control of Palestine been a problem for a long time, especially under the Paris-94 Protocol?

- Yes, that was a mistake. For the Palestinians to emerge as a genuine, completely independent state, they must build their own economy. I told this as a military to Yitzhak Rabin several times. Why should we control their imports and exports? First with Salam Fayyad came a better financial solution. He is a proud Palestinian, but was also very practical financially.

- We must at all costs avoid a one-state solution. Divorce can be done in an adult and friendly way.

- What about the future of Israel og

Excerpt from unpublished film interview. Printed in MODERN TIMES 'Palestinian document.

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Truls Liehttp: /www.moderntimes.review/truls-lie
Editor-in-chief in MODERN TIMES. See previous articles by Lie i Le Monde diplomatique (2003–2013) and Morgenbladet (1993-2003) See also part video work by Lie here.

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