Palestinians say “hell no” to Trump peace team’s economic conference. But three Arab states say “yes.” This is a very big deal. Here’s why. (My new column for The Jerusalem Post.)


(Washington, D.C.) — Here are excerpts from my new column. To read the full column, please click here.

“Palestinians say ‘hell no’ to Trump economic parley”

Historic, tectonic shifts are underway in the Middle East. Many Americans and Europeans are convinced President Donald Trump’s long-awaited and highly controversial peace plan has no chance of success. But they are utterly missing the point. Yes, the Palestinians are hardening their position against peace with Israel, but the Gulf Arab states are steadily warming toward peace with the Jewish state.

Consider the latest developments.

On June 25 and 26, Trump’s advisers will host a conference to roll out the first section of their peace plan. Specifically, they will unveil their proposals to vastly improve the Palestinian economy and the living conditions of every Arab – Muslim and Christian – in the West Bank and Gaza.

No foreign ministers are invited, only finance ministers. This session isn’t about boundaries, capitals, flags and anthems. It’s about creating more jobs, rising wages, good schools, better roads, more trade, clean water and uninterrupted electricity.

Sadly, Palestinian leaders are saying “no” to attending. Actually, they’re saying, “hell, no!”

….[Yet,] three Gulf Arab states – Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia – are saying “yes,” they would be happy to attend the American conference. Indeed, the leaders of Bahrain are actually making the bold move of hosting the conference.

Israel has also said, “yes,” – Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon is very much looking forward to participating, his spokesman said.

Such developments are a very big deal for several reasons….




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