With Its Economic Peace Plan, the Trump Administration Offers Palestinian Leaders Another Opportunity to Miss https://mosaicmagazine.com/picks/israel-zionism/2019/06/with-its-economic-peace-plan-the-trump-administration-offers-palestinian-leaders-another-opportunity-to-miss/

June 24, 2019 | David Horovitz
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On Saturday, the White House released a 40-page “peace to prosperity” plan for improving the economic conditions of the Palestinians; a complementary political proposal is to be released at a later date. The Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas, in typical fashion, rejected the plan even before its details were revealed, and is boycotting the upcoming conference in Bahrain where it will be discussed. David Horovitz comments:

Looked at in isolation, the peace-to-prosperity program is, in theory, hugely beneficial for the Palestinians, promoting an end to victimhood and a route to empowerment. It sets out a framework for a revolutionary improvement in the daily lives of the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, including via investment in a physical link across Israel between the two areas. It also indicates empathy with Palestinian national aspirations. In fact, it suggests recognition of the Palestinian nation; chapter two of the main document is titled: “Empowering the Palestinian People: The Greatest Resource of Every Nation is its People.”

And while not endorsing independent Palestinian statehood, neither does the plan negate it. Indeed, its authors have made clear that a mutually acceptable political resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a precondition for this vision of economic revolution. . . .

[But] it might be most sensible to read the peace-to-prosperity program, first, as the Trump White House’s “this is what you will be throwing away” letter to Abbas. You can work with us, and with other well-intentioned parties, the administration is saying, for the sake of what the plan’s opening paragraph . . . describes as the Palestinian people’s “historic endeavor to build a better future for their children.” Or you can deny your people this unique opportunity. To which Abbas, the man who chose not to accept Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s unsurpassable 2008 statehood offer, has already responded with a predictably resounding, “go to hell.”

Does the administration have a backup strategy, therefore—a path forward that it has wisely developed in the certain knowledge that Abbas would not prove a willing partner? One would like to assume that the answer to this is yes, except that it is devilishly hard to imagine what that path would look like.

Read more on Times of Israel: https://www.timesofisrael.com/trumps-this-is-what-you-will-be-throwing-away-

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