Thursday, August 23, 2018

What Will Happen After The Palestinians Reject Trump's Peace Plan?

What Will Happen After The Palestinians Reject Trump's Peace Plan?

Amid speculation that U.S. President Donald Trump could soon release his Middle East peace plan, the word in political, academic and Jewish organizational circles is that it's almost certain to not go anywhere and surely be rejected by the Palestinian leadership.

The reasons for the expected Palestinian uncompromising opposition to any deal with Israel have been repeated ad infinitum elsewhere, but suffice it to say that religiously, culturally and politically, Palestinians are in no way ready to accept a deal. 

Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas does not want to go down in history as a traitor to his people and be the one to give legitimacy to Israel.

So the question remains: What will happen after the Palestinians reject Trump's plan ?

"When the Palestinians reject the plan, Trump can then say he tried. The Palestinians have already created the narrative that Trump is not an honest broker," says Romirowsky, who is also a fellow at the Middle East Forum think tank.

Romirowsky sees the violence launched from Gaza against Israel as interwoven with the peace process talk by the U.S. administration and is meant to create a media image of Israel as the aggressor--bombing with fighter jets--with the Palestinians using mostly kites and balloons, however destructive they have turned out to be.

"The interesting thing is there are good ties between Israel, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and other Sunni states," he says, "and this highlights the fact that the Palestinian issue is not the central regional concern. Iran is."

Asked about what the fallout could be if the Palestinians reject the expected U.S. peace plan, Romirowsky responded that more violence against Israel from Gaza and even from the Hezbollah terrorist group in the north could be expected. He predicts a possible outbreak of full-fledged war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza in the next few months.

A war with Israel would change the media narrative by seeking to show the Arabs as victims and Israel as the aggressor, he adds.

The same is true regarding the multiple rejections by the Palestinians for a state, continues Romirowsky, pointing out that "the Palestinians have shown again and again that they don't want a deal, and prefer to play the role of victim."

Palestinians and Arabs consider American offer biased

Ronen Yitzhak, head of the Middle East Studies department at Israel's Western Galilee College, tells JNS that Trump's plan includes items the Palestinians would never agree to. In addition, he speculates that if no major Arab states--Saudi Arabia or Jordan, in particular--support the plan, the world will side with the Palestinians.

"The Trump plan was meant to go around the Palestinians, and get the agreement of the Saudis and Jordanians, but now they don't agree either," says Yitzhak.

He adds that the delaying in the release of Trump's plan could very well be because of the failure to gain Arab support.

No comments: