Nobody in Israel, in the Palestinian Authority, and certainly in the US has any interest in ending the direct talks launched only a month ago. An end to the talks would mark a rapid return to the dark period where Israel again would find itself ostracized and isolated. Netanyahu understands both the political and diplomatic implications. Hence, he will attempt to continue the talks with the Americans and Palestinians and ultimately reach understandings. Abbas and Obama also need these talks, for their own reasons.
Senior government officials say that the real test will come when requests for new construction permits pile up on Netanyahu’s and Ehud Barak’s desks. At that point, Barak would be able to hold up new permits in Judea and Samaria, while Netanyahu continues to prevent east Jerusalem construction, as he did since the beginning of the year.
The settlers may have been celebrating Monday morning, yet if Netanyahu is serious about continuing the direct negotiations, they will quickly find out that with the exception of the hundreds of existing building permits, much time shall pass before Barak or Netanyahu sign new permits.