Secretary of State John Kerry criticized Israel yesterday during a speech before the Brookings Institution's Saban Forum, claiming that support for settlement construction stems from a desire to subvert Israeli-Palestinian peace, the Times of Israel website reports today (December 5, 2016).
Kerry refrained from committing to veto any UN resolution intended to establish a Palestinian state, only promising a veto "if it is a biased, unfair resolution calculated to delegitimize Israel."
Kerry -- who will end his tenure as secretary of state in January -- warned the audience that "you can fight about where we are in this process, but I'll tell you this: There is no status quo. It is getting worse. It is moving in the wrong direction."
In his lengthy appearance, Kerry accused Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu's government of suffering from a lack of leadership, and explicitly cited Education Minister Naftali Bennett's recent comments lauding the demise of the two-state solution as "profoundly disturbing." Kerry emphasized that he was certain that the settlement construction was intended to serve as an obstacle to peace.