Charles Krauthammer: Why Middle East Peace Starts In Saudi Arabia

Grant Rumley, an expert on Palestinian politics at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), told Jewish Insider, "This type of language harkens back to the Bush administration era concept of 'linkage, ' whereby solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would somehow unlock regional peace".

Israeli officials hailed the speech as a triumph for the country's far-right government, which includes ministers opposed to the idea of an independent Palestinian state.

During the 2016 election campaign and in the first three and a half months of his presidency, Trump made clear that he will run a foreign policy subservient to the interests of finance capital, oil and other extractive industries, and the military - industrial complex.

Before the USA president touched down in Israel, however, his coming visit was marred when Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told reporters the US delegation was heading to "Tel Aviv, home of Judaism".

"I was gratified that President Abbas joined the summit and committed to taking firm but necessary steps to fight terrorism and confront its hateful ideology", Trump said.

But much of the intrigue over Trump's public statements during the trip revolved around what he didn't say. But there is a larger elephant in the room that Trump is unwilling to address.

"He didn't reprimand Israel for settlements, he didn't commit the United States to a two-state vision".

Iran, to hear Trump tell it, is the source of all the region's problems. He has taken with him his wife, Melania, daughter Ivaka, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and other officials.

The Palestinian leadership has pledged to work with Trump, hoping his unorthodox approach can lead to progress previously lacking. USA policy officially recognises East Jerusalem as occupied territory and his attendance may have broken protocol.

"It was a visit of intent, of his intent to reach out and help us reach a final agreement".

The Knesset held a special session to mark Jerusalem Day. His visit to the West Bank lasted around two hours.

Donald Trump's visit to Riyadh saw a significant boost in American public opinion about relations between the United States and Saudi Arabia, a recent survey shows.

Yet critics pointed out that while the symbolism of Trump's visit was significant, there were precious few details on his plan for kickstarting negotiations.

That's why the Saudis are asking for a lot less from Israel than the peace processors thought.

In other words, Israel seeks an alliance without linking it to the issue of peace with the Palestinians. Later, as they took the traditional "family photo" group shot, the heads of state quietly kept their distance from Trump, who minutes earlier was caught on video appearing to push the prime minister of Montenegro out of the way to get to his spot.

"The real question is if there is something substantive happening behind closed doors".

Despite the emergence of a younger, more pragmatic Saudi leadership embodied in deputy crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman that views Israel as a practical ally against Iran, the Palestinian issue remains a sacred cow that can not be sacrificed without serious consequences. The kingdom's demand for a sovereign Palestinian state based on the borders that existed before the 1967 Arab-Israel war will remain unfulfilled.

The White House believes that Trump has made personal breakthroughs with his peers, having now met one-on-one with all the leaders of G-7.

Although Trump does want a deal, he assigned his son-in-law Jared Kushner and former Trump Organization attorney Jason Greenblatt, two novice individuals who know even less about the complexity of the conflict than he does, to find a solution that has eluded several presidents before him.

  • Leroy Wright


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