EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Ehud Olmert lurched from unilateralism to final status negotiations to military conflict with the Palestinians, and failed in all three tracks. His failure in dealing effectively with Hamas in Gaza is the most strategically ominous. As Olmert departs, he bequeaths to his successors the need to deal with Hamas in Gaza and to grope for alternative ways to address the perennial Palestinian question in the West Bank. He did not move Israel further ahead on either front.
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*Efraim Inbar is professor of political science at Bar-Ilan University and director of the Begin-Sadat (BESA) Center for Strategic Studies.