Washington’s twice former ambassador to Israel was yesterday appointed as John Kerry’s envoy to the embryonic peace talks between the Israelis and Palestinians.
Martin Indyk, a former kibbutz volunteer and researcher at the pro-Israeli lobbying group AIPAC, was named by the State Department as the replacement to David Hale.
A Middle East specialist, London-born Mr Indyk served as America’s ambassador in Tel Aviv between 1995 and 1997, and again for a year until 2001. He played a leading role in the ultimately failed Camp David peace talks in 2000.
Mr Indyk has worked in several political and academic positions, which have focused on the Middle East. He served as special assistant to President Bill Clinton and senior director for Near East and South Asian affairs at the National Security Council between 1993 and 1995. He was also assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs in the State Department from 1997 to 2000.
He currently works for the Brookings Institute – a foreign policy think tank - in Washington.
On July 19, Mr Indyk tweeted: “So Kerry did it. By George he did it! Negotiations will resume forthwith. Now watch the naysayers declare there'll never be an agreement.” In fact, what Mr Kerry had done at that stage was to convince the two sides to sit down and agree to discuss the possibility of substantive talks.