Israel, Palestinians Agree to Joint Statement that Kerry Looks Funny
Jerusalem, Israel (AP) – Another round of shuttle diplomacy by US Secretary of State John Kerry has succeeded in getting Israel and the Palestinians to agree to a statement that the Secretary’s appearance resembles a caricature.
In what has become a rare point of consensus between the two sides, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told their constituencies this morning that as a result of spending hours talking to Kerry about how and under what conditions to restart final status negotiations, they concluded that his height, enlarged features, hairstyle, and unusually prominent chin all combine to produce what Netanyahu called, “a cross between Jay Leno and the sloth from Ice Age.” Abbas characterized the look as “giraffe-like.”
Israel and the Palestinians have not held final-status talks in more than two years. Abbas demands that Israel accept the 1967 border as the starting point for such negotiations, while Netanyahu dismisses any preconditions. Kerry, like his predecessor Hillary Clinton, has been trying to bridge the gaps between those positions. To date, the only point of agreement remains his likeness to an Andy-Griffith-Sea-Otter blend.
The development comes at a time of increasing instability in the Middle East, with the civil war in Syria already more than two years old; a continuing protest movement in Turkey; ongoing sectarian violence in Iraq; and renewed upheaval in Egypt. The Israeli-Palestinian front has come to seem less relevant of late, Kerry told reporters, but it remains a crucial linchpin in the complex web of strategic elements in the region, which he likened in shape to a silhouetted dog pile.
This is not the first time warring factions have agreed on nothing but that their would-me mediator appears similar to various things comical or ugly. In the aftermath of the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Israeli and Egyptian representatives alike compared US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger’s head to a hard-boiled egg. The same parties later said that President Jimmy Carter looked like a badly drawn Alfred E. Newman, the mascot of MAD magazine.
Kerry hopes to leverage this development toward more ambitious areas of agreement, perhaps getting the sides to commit, as early as this August, to a joint resolution in the Security Council to mock various nations for their shapes. “I’ve always thought Greece looks vaguely like that thing that hangs down from the back end of a goat, and that Norway and Sweden are ridiculously phallic,” he said.
From there the nations might move on to making overt fun of other countries’ names. “Ecuador? Really?” continued Kerry. “You name your country for its location on some imaginary line?” he laughed.
Netanyahu agreed, noting that the “United” States of America have seldom been so.