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John Kerry tried to get the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, to buck-up and smile. But he wasn't successful as he tries to broker peace between the Israelis and Palestinians.Apparently, the Palestinians believe Kerry is giving too much favor to the Israelis. As the Los Angeles Times reports: Palestinians still say Kerry's plan does not go far enough in forcing Israel to accept as a basis of talks the borders that existed before it seized additional territory in the 1967 Middle East War. But despite Kerry's flurry of phone calls with Israelis and Palestinians on Friday, and a brief helicopter visit to the West Bank, he was unable to get Israel to accept the condition or persuade Palestinians to back down, Yousef said. Palestinians' lackluster support was evident during a Ramallah photo op Friday with a smiling Kerry and somber Abbas. "Mr. President, you should look happy," Kerry said. Abbas did not respond.And today the Jerusalem Post is reporting that Israel will free Palestinian prisoners: Israel has agreed to a long-standing Palestinian demand to release Palestinian prisoners in order to resume peace talks, but will not yield on other central issues, International Relations Minister Yuval Steinitz said on Saturday.
We couldn't have a worse SOS. Hillary and Albright were close.