Trump’s Middle East peace deal stumbles out of the gate as the Arabs refuse to attend an economic forum designed to benefit their own people
In a move as arctypically Palestinian as it was predictable, the Palestinians, about whom the late Israeli foreign minister Abba Eban remarked more than 50 years ago that they never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity, have announced that they will not be participating in the late June Middle East economic forum in Bahrain. The purpose of the forum, one that is expected to be attended by government representatives and investors from many Middle Eastern and Asian countries possibly including Israel, is to secure the funding necessary to jump-start the Palestinian economy in Judea and Samaria as well as in the Gaza Strip.
Additionally, this forum is being sold as the first step in President Trump’s effort, spearheaded by his son in law Jared Kushner, to finally bring an end to the more than century old Israeli-Arab conflict. Doubtlessly, it was this particular facet of the forum slated for the 25 and 26 of June that caused such an immediate allergic reaction in Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas’ office. Not only has he rejected any chance of participation by the Palestinians in the forum, one whose entire purpose is to help them climb out of poverty, he has stated that any Palestinian individual attending the forum would be an Israeli collaborator. This is a particularly loaded language, because Palestinian Arabs who have any dealings with Israelis and as a result are branded “collaborators” are hunted down, tortured, and killed by Palestinian security forces and their supporters throughout the Middle East region and even across the globe.
Consequently, Abbas’ branding of any Palestinian attendees as collaborators is a true Cain’s mark, making their lives forfeit to anyone who wishes to take them. This is and was intended to be a threat, a tactic of intimidation, whose purpose is to make sure that no prominent Palestinians or any other individuals claiming to represent Palestinian interests can take part in Trump’s forum without risking their very lives. In support of his intransigence, Abbas offered the tired tropes about Palestinian rights not being for sale and reiterated his stance that the only possible solution involves two states, with the Palestinian one having all of Judea and Samaria as well as the Gaza Strip as its territory and East Jerusalem as its capital.
The sad truth here is that both presidents, Abbas and Trump, are barking up the wrong tree and trafficking in things that are impossible and will never happen. After Arabs have repeatedly turned every piece of land over which they had full sovereignty into a base of operations for the physical destruction of Israel, after both South Lebanon and Gaza had become the densest populated areas for weapons of mass destruction anywhere on the globe except perhaps for the North Korean side of the DMZ, no Israeli government will ever again support the folly of granting Arabs full sovereignty on its borders if it can help it.
As to the so-called “Palestinian” Arabs, they will never sign a peace deal that involves the absolution of Israel from all future claims against it, simply because they are enjoined to do so by their own religion: Islam. Muslim leaders are not allowed to cede back ground that was once conquered by Islam, be it Judea and Samaria, the Galilee, or Andalusia, the land we today know as Spain. They can admit temporary defeat, they can negotiate truces during which they regroup and rearm, but they can never sign away Islam’s rights to any land that it had ever ruled and especially a land that is so rife with symbolism as the Land of Israel.
There are only a few things that are ever certain in this world, not many outcomes that one can really count on. Continued conflict between Arabs and Jews over the Land of Israel is, alas, one of those things. There will be no peace deal, nor will there be no “two states”, or “one state” solutions. There will be war and bloodshed for years, decades, centuries, until one side, hopefully the Arabs is utterly annihilated. This is what happened on the Iberian Peninsula between the 9th and the 15th centuries and this is what will happen in Israel. The rest is just posturing, lies, and propaganda.
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