Despite much sabre-rattling by Israel and the United States and the hyping up of expectations by the Palestinian leadership, the recognition of Palestine as a UN non-member observer state last year is becoming yet another footnote in the protracted conflict that has endured for 65 years.
Mere hours after the announcement Israel had its own announcement to make - it would build a new illegal settlement (according to international law all Israeli settlements in the occupied territories are illegal).
The earmarked site is called the E1 zone by Israel.
A handful of European countries responded with greater exasperation than usual, and the US called the spiteful step "counterproductive."
But they soon moved on to seemingly more pressing issues.
Palestinian activists who tried to counter Israel's illegal activities by pitching tents in areas marked for construction were violently removed.
So what is Mahmoud Abbas's Palestinian Authority (PA) doing?
It is still in the same pitiful position, serving as a buffer between occupied, ethnically cleansed and rightfully angry Palestinians and the Israeli state.
The PA's existence would not be possible without Israel's consent. Fiery speeches aside, the PA has effectively subcontracted part of the Israeli occupation - maintaining security in some areas, for example - often in exchange for perks such as easier access to business contracts or jobs.
It is this symbiosis that averts any serious confrontation between Israel and the PA.
This is in Israel's interests because to claim its responsibilities as an occupying power under international law would be a huge financial and political burden that could impede its settlement construction in east Jerusalem and the West Bank.
As it is Israel can maintain all the benefits of military occupation without much cost.
So some clever manifestation of the "peace process" must be found to help both Israel and the PA save face - Israel wants to finish its settlement plans and the PA wants to maintain its existence.
Israel's January 30 decision to release 400 million shekels (£70m) in taxes and tariffs it collects on behalf of the PA in the occupied territories - money it had "withheld" to punish the latter for its UN bid - may imply a resumption of the ongoing peace charade.
Israeli officials said the transfer was a goodwill "measure to ease the financial crisis faced by the Palestinians," a crisis which is of course of Israel's making.
An explosion of mass rallies and protests in the West Bank by people who have not received a full paycheque for months was not in Israel's interests or those of the PA. Desperate Palestinians marching throughout the territories would threaten Abbas's shrivelled political apparatus and Israel's horribly disfigured image.
But there is evidence that the timing of the release may reflect other goings-on behind the scenes.
The Arab League's secretary-general for Palestinian affairs Muhammad Sbeih told Jordan's al-Ghad newspaper on January 29 that a league delegation would shortly head to the US to "move forward the Middle East peace process."
The proposals apparently "include specific ideas about Israel's withdrawal from the occupied territories, the establishment of a Palestinian state and guaranteed security for both sides."
And on February 1 London-based Arabic newspaper al-Quds al-Arabi reported that Britain had hosted a conference for Palestinian and Israeli officials. The paper quoted Palestinian sources saying that the Israeli delegation was headed by Yossi Belin, who is known for his role in preparing the Oslo accords.
But Palestinian delegation leader Muhammad Ishtaya denied that negotiations had taken place, saying merely that the meeting had "discussed the Middle East crisis."
At the same time attempts to woo Hamas are continuing. Several Arab newspapers have reported that Hamas politburo member Khaled Meshaal had indicated recently to King Abdullah of Jordan that the organisation was prepared to accept the two-state solution, and asked him to convey this to US President Barack Obama. Hamas however denies this.
So, could we be on the brink of progress?
It doesn't look probable. Israel's policies on the occupation and settlements are unlikely to change after the recent elections. Despite media enthusiasm over the rise of Israel's "centre" parties none of those likely to form a coalition is interested in peace.
That said Israel may be slightly worried about political developments in the US.
Two of Obama's nominations for his new team are of great interest to Israel - John Kerry for secretary of state and Chuck Hagel as secretary for defence.
Voice of America posed a mundane question of Kerry: "Can he bring peace to Israel and the Palestinians?"
Israeli media is more candid: "Is John Kerry good for Israel?" asked the Yedioth Ahronot website.
It quoted a state official as saying: "He may be a friend of Israel but is not considered the standard bearer for Israel at the Senate." Oh dear.
If Kerry isn't good enough imagine the seething anger of neocons, pro-Israel pundits and others at Hagel's nomination.
Hagel's past statements on Israel indicate that he is certainly no "standard bearer" for Tel Aviv.
In an all-day confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill Republican lawmakers pounced on the former Nebraska Republican senator regarding everything he has said, failed to say or failed to sign regarding Israel in the past.
It was frankly quite difficult to decipher whether Senators John McCain and Ted Cruz were more concerned over US security issues - or Israel's interests masquerading as those of the US.
Hagel was, ironically, chastised for claiming that the pro-Israel lobby in Washington wielded great power, when the grilling he was receiving was evidence of exactly that.
Still, even if US priorities in the Middle East are slowly shifting we cannot expect a major change to Israel's behaviour on the ground.
Without a real mechanism to force a change of policy - impossible unless the pro-Israel lobby can be curbed - Israel won't budge.
But as US senators were busy defending their pro-Israel credentials on Capitol Hill other hearings of potential significance were taking place elsewhere.
An inquiry set up by the Human Rights Council last March, brazenly boycotted by Israel, had finally concluded that its settlements were a violation of international law and called on the country to "immediately" withdraw all settlers from east Jerusalem and the West Bank.
The UN investigators concluded that Israel's continued violations of the 1949 Geneva Conventions could amount to war crimes "that fall under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court."
This may be an avenue for Palestine in the future. But until it can find an alternative to the sorry spectacle of "negotiations" on terms dictated by Israel and the US all they can expect is more of the same - a secret conference here, a settlement there, and the occasional Israeli "handout" taken from Palestinians' own taxes.