Israelis and Palestinians are ready 'to reach for peace'
- Author: Jon Douglas May 25, 2017,
May 25, 2017, 1:42
Last week, while walking down the red carpet at Israel's Ben Gurion airport with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, the President had tried to hold the First Lady's hand, only to be swatted away in full view of cameras.
"I am committed to trying to achieve a peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians", Trump told a press conference at PA headquarters in Bethlehem, without mentioning the possibility of Palestinian statehood.
"Iran calls for the destruction of Israel".
Dozens of supporters crowded at Shuhada Square in the center of the city and torched U.S. flags, as well as photos and an effigy of Donald Trump.
Trump's strategic re-positioning in the region has two parts. Since then, US policy on the city has not explicitly changed much, with former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama both favoring direct negotiations between the two parties over unilateral action.
Netanyahu had ferociously opposed the Iran deal, claiming it posed an existential threat to Israel.
Kushner, who wields tremendous clout within the White House on a broad range of issues, is not a full-time envoy in the traditional model that previous USA administrations have employed when peace negotiations were under way. We just got back from the Middle East.
"Kushner is good for Israel because of his ... fanatic positions", said Hani al-Masri, a Palestinian political analyst based in the West Bank city of Ramallah. He said that while Abbas condemned Monday's attack in Manchester, "if [the attacker] had been Palestinian, the murderer's family would have gotten a payment". That is completely wrong. "Both sides will face tough decisions, but with determination, compromise and the belief that peace is possible, Israelis and Palestinians can make a deal", the president added, vaguely channeling legendary T.V. gameshow host Monty Hall. "This wicked ideology must be obliterated - and I mean completely obliterated - and innocent life must be protected".
Meir Javedanfar is an Iranian-born Israeli who teaches contemporary Iranian politics at a private research university in Israel, the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. Commercial Israeli flights aren't even allowed to fly over Saudi Arabian airspace.
In this instance, the presidential pair can be seen exiting Air Force One in Rome on Tuesday.
Trump gave his response while speaking in Israel, the current stop on his 9-day trip through the Middle East and Europe. Yes, but only after going to Saudi Arabia first. Well, I hope this heralds a real change.
Indeed, Israeli leaders are already anxious that they might lose their edge in the region. We all know that.
Palestinian activists have called for a "Day of Rage" to coincide with Trump's visit, the Al Jazeera reported.
Trump provided few specifics about how a deal might be achieved in a peace process that has been stalled for years. And he will not impose anything on us, and he will not patronize us. "The problem is with the occupation and settlements, as well as the non-recognition of the state of Palestine". But Israel's current hardline government has no intention of making the concessions that such a resolution would demand.
"Trump didn't speak of their right to self-determination. he didn't speak of the two state solution ... and they will probably be disappointed that Trump did not say what his plans were or his vision was", Abdel-Hamid said.
If Jared Kushner has a plan to solve the Arab-Israeli conflict, so far he's giving little away.