How Newsday can possibly think that a new secretary of state could restart peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians is beyond me ["World in turmoil awaits," Editorial, Dec. 28]. I say this especially in light of the incredible construction surge in east Jerusalem.

Make no mistake about the fact that Israel has embarked on a land campaign -- a war, if you will -- that will make a two-state solution an impossibility. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu knows this. Why pay lip service to the idea, and come off as hypocrites of the highest order, when, in reality, Netanyahu is doing everything under the sun to prevent the geographic and cultural reality of a Palestinian nation?

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The only thing the new secretary of state could do, and should do, is to withhold the billions in aid we send each year to Israel, until its government stops building on Palestinian lands. But we all know that our government is spineless in the face of Israeli aggression.

Everyone should know that the new secretary of state will pay the same lip service that Hillary Clinton did, understanding that defeat is secured by the evil intransigence of mankind.

Harry Katz, Southold