- The Trump Administration Is Backing Palestinians into a Corner
by BILL LAW, https://www.fairobserver.com/
In turning down “the deal of the century” — as they must — the Palestinians will be castigated as ungrateful and shortsighted.
On May 2, Jared Kushner, US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, was playing his cards very close to the chest at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), a pro-Israeli think tank. Kushner is the man charged with delivering the so-called “deal of the century” that will supposedly secure peace between Israel and the Palestinians. He provided no hard details about what shape the deal would take. However, in a 45-minute interview, Kushner disingenuously deflected a question about a two-state solution: “[It] means one thing to Israelis and another to Palestinians, so we told ourselves — let’s try not to say it.”
On the same day, thousands of miles from Washington, the head of a little known US government commission was attending a Holocaust memorial ceremony at Auschwitz. Paul Packer, a New York hedge fund manager appointed by Donald Trump to run the United States Commission for the Preservation of American Heritage Abroad, told Breitbart News that the occasion, attended by several US ambassadors “shows the commitment that the Trump administration has to the words, ‘Never Again’, and to making sure that all our allies know the words of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, that anti-Zionism equals antisemitism.”
Packer’s mention of Pompeo referenced a speech the secretary of state had given to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in March of this year. AIPAC has close links with WINEP. The secretary of state, commenting on the rise of anti-Semitism, said “this bigotry has taken an insidious new form in the guise of anti-Zionism [which] denies the very legitimacy of the Israeli state and the Israeli people.” In attacking academics, journalists and politicians who criticize Israel, and condemning those who support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) Pompeo continued: “Let me go on the record. Anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism.”
As the two-state solution slides, or rather is driven, into oblivion by the Trump administration and the Israeli government, I am reminded of a comment John Bolton, now the president’s national security adviser, made in 2017. He was in Israel at the time and he said there should be a three-state solution: the Israelis to absorb most of the West Bank including the settlements and areas already designated as under its full control; the Jordanians to pick up the isolated Palestinian communities that were left in the West Bank; and Egypt to take Gaza — the Palestinian dream of a homeland snuffed out irrevocably.