How could Palestinians beat Trump’s deal? They need a new strategy. Part 1
If ever there was a time for Palestinians to implement a strategy to counter the deadliest threat to their cause, it is now. US President Donald Trump‘s “deal of the century” is the latest in a series of failed peace proposals over the past few decades that have only served to promote Israel’s expansion and consolidate its hold on what remains of historic Palestine. If reports of its content are true, the so-called “deal of the century” is the most lethal of these attempts to deprive Palestinians of their basic rights to date.
Drawn up over the past two years by Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, Jason Greenblatt, his adviser, and David Friedman, the US ambassador to Israel, it heavily favours Israeli interests. All three men are fervent Zionists, They lack experience in Middle East peacemaking, and know little about Palestinian history or culture. It is hard to envisage three more unsuitable people for such a task. The deal, which Kushner has described as “unique”, would supposedly resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In a recent interview, he claimed it would improve the lives of the Palestinian people, while condescendingly casting doubt on their ability to govern themselves.
The exact details of the deal have not been made public yet, but a stream of unauthenticated leaks in the Israeli press provide a rough idea of what might be some of its provisions. Briefly, the deal proposes the creation of a Palestinian semi-autonomous mini-state called “New Palestine”, comprised of Areas A and B of the occupied West Bank, its capital to be somewhere within the expanded boundaries of municipal Jerusalem.
It would be demilitarised, its borders under Israeli control, and linked to Gaza by a corridor. Israel would retain most of Area C and the whole Jordan Valley. Gaza would be expanded into northern Sinai on land leased from Egypt. Hamas would surrender its arms and come under Palestinian Authority control. The deal would be sweetened by an aid package of $30-40 billion over five years, the bulk to be provided by the Gulf states, with smaller contributions from the United States, the EU and others; the assumption is that Palestinian acquiescence can be bought with financial handouts. The Palestinian right of return would be cancelled. Palestinian refugees would receive compensation and be allowed more rights in the Arab states where they reside.
Distributed by PAJU (Palestinian and Jewish Unity)