Donald Trump has met with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas at the White House. Trump promised to act as a ‘facilitator’, ‘mediator’ or ‘arbitrator’ in future peace talks between Israel and Palestine.
However, no concrete plans were proposed beyond the long standing commitment of the US and the Palestinian leadership to work for a so-called two state solution whereby a Palestinian state would be formed on the basis of the 1967 borders of the region. Such a plan would see a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza with East Jerusalem as its capital.
Donald Trump then went on to utter a supremely naive statement,
“There’s such hatred, but hopefully there won’t be such hatred for very long.
All children of God must be taught to value and respect human life and condemn all of those who target the innocent”.
Trump pledged to continue American initiatives designed to create business and economic opportunities in Palestine.
Neither Abbas nor Trump mentioned the surprise declaration of a new charter by Hamas in which the radical Sunni terrorist group pledged to accept the 1967 borders of a new Palestinian state, something which Abbas’ faction Fatah have long claimed as their terms for an eventual peace settlement.
I spite of the dangers of Hamas who are currently fighting on the same side as ISIS, al-Qaeda, Saudi Arabia, Israel and Turkey in the Syrian conflict, it is important to remember that the recent announcement of a new Hamas charter may well have been the byproduct of a meeting of Palestinian factions in Moscow earlier this year.
In January, 2017, Hamas, Fatah and other smaller Palestinian parties agreed to form a united front during future negotiations with Israel and any mediator whether the United States or another broker such as Russia.
In a world that is becoming increasingly multi-polar, is seems difficult to imagine anything resembling a meaningful peace deal in which the United States acts as a unilateral arbitrator.
Just as the so-called Iran deal was achieved through mutual efforts between Russia, America, China, Britain, France and Germany, a deal on Palestine would if anything, require even larger international efforts.
When it comes to protracted crises such as that between Israel and Palestine, only a multi-polar effort could even approach creating a peace that could be deemed to be successful. The days of America forcing Palestinians and Israelis to shake hands is long over. Donald Trump’s total lack of any ideas in respect of a settlement to the Israel-Palestine conflict is proof positive that America is no longer strong enough to act alone in such matters.