On January 28th, President Trump released his Middle Eastern Peace Plan intended to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, calling it a “win-win.” Palestinians, however, disagree.
The implication of the President's 'peace plan' paints a dire picture for Palestine's future hopes of dignity and statehood - analysts cite page 34 of 180, which reads: “the predicate condition to a Palestinian state being recognized is that there must be a free press; free elections; guarantees of religious freedom; an independent judiciary; financial institutions that are as good, transparent and as effective as in the western world; and the US and Israel will judge whether the Palestinians have achieved this.” Placing the determination of statehood in the hands of Israel effectively ensures that they will never achieve it. Moreover, Palestinian officials were not included in the three-year-long formulation of this plan whatsoever. It is impossible to expect a fair and inclusive peace plan when the very party that is most impacted by violence and aggression is not included. Mahmoud Abbas, the President of Palestine, cut all ties with the United States and Israel following the release of this deal, describing the plan as “nonsense” and a “conspiracy deal.”
President Trump’s timing in his attempt to reintroduce plans to bring peace to Israel and Palestine is interesting, to say the least. After his controversial decision to kill General Qassem Soleimani created near-chaos within the Middle East, one would assume that President Trump would be more strategically conservative in involvement in Middle Eastern affairs, making his attempts to mediate conflicts that are hotly debated as Israel-Palestine that much more confusing. However, the President's actions have nonetheless changed the dynamic of the international negotiating table against peace, escalating tensions on both sides of this already divisive dispute.
President Trump’s “peace plan” is little more than a veiled attempt to exert even more control over the Middle East than he already has. Whether it is a product of his foreign affairs wagering that he thought they would have global support for a plan that suppresses Palestine’s campaign for statehood or a power play regardless of international approval, it is a decision that will only further entrench the already painfully high tensions of the conflict, and has already made peace harder to achieve.