Feb 06,2020 – JORDAN TIMES –
Ahmad Y. Majdoubeh
Almost everything I read in our part of the world about the Trump administration’s so-called “Deal of the Century,” since its announcement on January 28, is either dismissive of it or derisive.
So much is wrong with it on so many counts.
First of all, it was put together without due consultation or coordination with the second major party to the conflict, the Palestinians.
The Trump administration did everything in close coordination and cooperation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu government, and adopted, it would seem, the latter’s position verbatim.
In this sense, dubbing it as a “deal” is very fitting, because it is a deal between the Trump administration and its bosom friend the Netanyahu government.
The Palestinians were ignored and almost entirely excluded from the very beginning.
This is why they rejected it the minute it was announced.
What adds insult to injury is the fact that those who put it together are all Zionist extremists for whom the Palestinians are at best either irrelevant or a nuisance.
Secondly, it is a “vision” and not a peace plan. For a long time, all concerned with the Palestinian issue have been expecting the Trump administration, like other American administrations before it, to come up with a concrete plan, either negotiated or coordinated with all parties to the conflict.
Instead, it has announced a “vision” that guarantees Israel everything the Netanyahu government has ever dreamt of, and “promises” the Palestinians much less than even the bare minimum, “IF” they fulfill so many impossible conditions.
Everything is given to the Israelis unconditionally, and so many conditions are placed on anything and everything that the Palestinians may hope to get.
Which means the Palestinians will, in effect, find themselves chasing a mirage, worse than what was promised in the Oslo accords.
Grab everything and keep the Palestinians negotiating futilely has been an established policy by several Israeli governments.
Third, the prompt rejection of the “deal” came not only from the Palestinians, but also the Arabs and many in the international community, in America, and in Israel.
The promptness of the rejection by so many testifies to how bad the “deal” is, and to the fact that it was born dead.
The theatrics of the announcement are bad, but so are the contents of the verbose document, which are full of falsehoods and venom.
Fourth, and this is perhaps the most disturbing, the “vision” is devised with the intention of changing nothing on the ground.
For decades, it has been an Israeli practice to create realities on the ground that makes any peace settlement with the Palestinians and Arabs almost impossible.
Since the advent of the Netanyahu government in particular, Israel has not been interested in peace. As a matter of fact, it has been actively seeking to subvert the Oslo agreement.
Worse, they have been annexing Palestinian territories, building illegal settlements on them, constructing roads and highways which eat them up, setting up checkpoints, erecting walls for the purpose of leaving no land for a Palestinian state to be set up on, etc,.
The Trump administration’s “deal” is designed with the aim of forcing a rejection from the Palestinians so as to enable Israel to continue to annex, confiscate and expand in territory which does not belong to it; and thus subvert peace, under the pretext that the Palestinians have not accepted the deal.
This is bad; this is sinister.
The “deal” harms the Palestinians; in fact, it crushes their dreams and aspirations of a viable state and a secure homeland.
But does it benefit Israel?
In the short term, maybe. In the long run, no.
Cheating the Palestinians of a legitimate state and a homeland is unjust.
Injustice can never bring about peace and security. All the “deal”, which is imposed out of sheer malice and brute power, is doing is prolonging the conflict and putting the Israelis on the one hand, and the Palestinians and the Arabs on the other on an ultimate collision course.
The collision may not happen tomorrow or the day after, but eventually it will occur.
The Trump administration and the Netanyahu government will go down in history as having cheated both the Israelis and the Palestinians of peaceful coexistence and a secure future.
The regrettable thing about the “deal” is that it is in the interest of no one: Palestinian, Arab or Israeli.