Comparing the Israeli-Palestinian standoff in the Middle East to an "abscessed tooth," former President Bill Clinton told CNN's Fareed Zakaria on Sunday that the United States must play an aggressive role in reaching a breakthrough.
"With all foreign policy conflicts, I like to say you've got to decide whether a foreign policy problem is a scab on your knee after you fall down or an abscessed tooth," Clinton said. "With the scab, you want to let it alone. It will cure itself if you will just let it alone. Time passing is good. With an abscessed tooth, all you're going to do is become sick and more infected if you don't deal with it."
The standoff between Israelis and Palestinians, Clinton continued, is the latter: both populations keep growing, and with time their citizens seems to be moving further and further toward hardline positions.