Before discussing President Obama’s trip to Israel, several facts about the faultering Middle East peace process should be established. There has already been a two state solution with the formation of Israel and internationally accepted borders back in 1948. The U.N. and the International community, lead by the UK apportioned the land of Israel and the land of Palestine. That two state solution lasted only days because the Arab countries refused to accept the U.N. resolution establishing the country of Israel. There are those who would say, it wasn’t the U.N.’s to give away and they might have a point. However, that’s not the entire story. At the time of the U.N. resolution, many Jews had already been moving to what is now Israel and purchasing homes and property from the Arab inhabitants. Following the Holocaust, many Jews had no where else to go and wanted to return to their historical homeland. Remember, Israel was not the paradise it is today. It was a barren, desolate location, that other than religious value, served no useful purpose. It was desert which is why the Arabs would sell to the Jews when they began moving to the region. When Israel was established, they turned that part of the desert into an oasis. Fast forward to the 2000 Camp David Peace Accord, which was the closest the Palestinians and Israeli’s ever came to a two state solution, with President Clinton the mediator. The two sides, Ehud Barak and Yasser Arafat were very close to an agreement but Arafat killed that deal, leaving a very bitter taste in the mouth of President Clinton who essentially washed his hands of middle east peace following the collapse. One other thing that must be clear is that Israel is not unreasonable when dealing with a legitimate parter. Few remember that Israel returned the Sinai to Egypt after capturing it in the Yom Kippur War. But Anwar Sadat was a very intelligent and pragmatic man who paid for peace with his life. I suggest all those who have never visited the middle east go there and see for themselves the situation on the ground, before forming their opinions. Israel, for most of her existence, has been surrounded by those who desire her destruction. That’s not an easy place to be day after day, month after month and year after year. Fortunately, there are countries in the middle east, Jordan, Turkey and even Egypt that recognize Israel to be less of a threat to them than Iran and Syria. What President Obama must now do is stand strong with Israel, guaranteeing her safety to the world, while imploring Israel to go back to the negotiating table with Mahmoud Abbas. He must urge Hamas to lay down arms and accept Israel’s right to exist or be rendered insignificant. Israel for her part must cease settlement expansion and must come to terms on new borders that take into account at least some of the settlements and new realities on the ground. From there, discussions can begin on the status of Jerusalem. Clearly a one state solution is no solution. That will never happen, nor should it. The time is now to bring all serious parties to the negotiating table and to reach an agreement. It’s the only answer for lasting peace and prosperity in the middle east.