The secret negotiations in Oslo that produced the breakthrough in the Arab-Israeli peace process demonstrated that the true fate of a peace process rests in the hands of the protagonists rather than in the hands of the intermediaries. When the Cold War ended, Israel understood that Washington might not be able to continue its high level of foreign aid to Israel as public concerns turned to domestic problems. As for the Palestinians, the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union meant the discontinuation of political, economic, and military aid from their traditional supporter. The failure of the Washington talks and the lack of authority of the Palestinian delegation there to negotiate on its own were the most important reasons behind the Israeli decision to recognize the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). President Bill Clinton's stand on Israel is another reason for the Oslo breakthrough.