By John Fussell
President Trump’s Israel/Palestine peace plan is one more U.S. Middle East foreign policy blunder in a long line of tragedies during the past 30 years that has produced endless wars, death, destruction, and drained our nation’s human and financial resources.
Trump’s plan annexes the Palestinian’s Jordan Valley and all the Palestinian land between 1967 internationally recognized border and the Israeli separation wall illegally built on Palestinian land. It proclaims Jerusalem as the “undivided capital of Israel.” Trump’s plan reconfigures the Israeli occupation into a potential “state,” smaller than the twenty-two percent of historical Palestine once envisioned to be the boundaries of the long-dead, “two-state solution.” This Trumpian solution would give the Palestinian a diminished rump state with no control over borders, air space, or aquifers. Such is not an independent sovereign free state.
Unilaterally annexing Palestinian land has no support in international law. It is simply theft. Further diminishing the disappearing Palestine and then expecting Palestinians to negotiate over the remaining spoils is not peacemaking. It is coercive bullying that will not achieve peace, freedom, equality, and justice for the people between the river and the sea.
Trump’s plan may play well to Trump’s, Netanyahu’s, and Gantz’s political bases. But it is a gross injustice to the Palestinian people, a betrayal of an Israeli minority who prefer a sustainable peace, and an insult to all people of conscience. We need a different President, as well as a peacemaking approach based on mutual respect, freedom, justice and equality.
John Fussell is on the Board of Directors of the Tree of Life Educational Fund and a resident of Connecticut.