Imagine for a moment that you’re Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman — or, for that matter, any one of a number of other Arab leaders.
Your region is in turmoil.
Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Yemen are failed states.
Lebanon is teetering on the brink.
Iran is a nuclear threshold state exporting terror, destabilizing Arab states, and bearing a 1300 plus year grudge against your brand of Islam. Islamist organizations labeling you a blasphemer running an illegitimate regime boast considerable popularity among your citizens.
Changes in the world oil market are compelling you to rethink your country’s economic model and social compact.
In short, you’re facing some challenges. You need help — and you know it.
You look around you, and you notice Israel — not for the first time, but through new eyes.
You still don’t like the Jews, and you’re far from thrilled about having a Jewish State on your doorstep.
But still . . .
You see an internally stable neighbor that has no designs on your territory.
You see a thriving economy, a vibrant technology sector, and a powerful military with unrivaled intelligence capabilities. You begin to wonder whether it might be — useful.
The more you think about ending the Arab/Israeli conflict, the more sense it seems to make.
You realize that Israel could strengthen both your national security and your economy.
But then . . .
Your calculations about your own national interest come to a sudden, screeching halt.
Because of — Palestine.
Decades ago, your predecessors created an entity for the sole purpose of strangling the Jewish State in its cradle. They spun a tale of a distinct Arab nation whose homeland just happened to coincide with whatever territory Israel controlled at any given moment.
They gave it life, handed the reins to the PLO, and lost control.
Today, the PLO has morphed into the Palestinian Authority (PA).
Its corrupt President, Mahmoud Abbas, is in the fifteenth year of his four-year term and still attempting to paper over a thirteen-year civil war that has put Hamas—part of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood your regime has branded a terrorist organization—in charge of Gaza. Abbas oversees a sclerotic, kleptocratic, antisemitic hate movement that has imprisoned and immiserated the people supposedly in its care. And thanks to mythology your country has been fueling for decades, he has a veto over your foreign policy.
You can’t pursue a strategic relationship that would help strengthen your regime, secure your country, improve the lives of your citizens, and promote regional stability because Mahmoud Abbas and the PLO are against it.
You’re stuck, and need a way forward. You have no idea how to create one on your own.
Enter President Trump and his "vision to Improve the lives of the Palestinian and Israeli people." The Trump plan has done you the enormous favor of ignoring your predecessors’ mythology. It simply discusses a number of important issues from the perspective of "principled realism" with minimal reference to the widely held misconceptions your predecessors promulgated.
Most importantly, the Trump plan recasts the "State of Palestine."
No longer is it an inevitability that must arise as a matter of justice.
Instead, it’s a possibility awaiting genuine reforms in behavior and attitude.
Trump has thrown you a lifeline. And because he’s spent three years laying the groundwork, you understand how to play it.
You begin with cautious praise for the plan’s humanitarian focus on improving economic opportunity for the Palestinians. You say little about security, borders, and sovereignty. You call for the PA/PLO to enter into direct negotiations with Israel and the U.S. on the basis of the Trump plan.
You make that call knowing that they will not and cannot do any such thing; they’re as trapped in the mythology as you are.
From there, several months hence, you begin to note that any Palestinian leader truly interested in the welfare of his people would embrace the Trump plan’s bountiful economic largesse. You raise the point confident that any Palestinian leader who accepted the plan would betray the mythology, nullify his own claim to leadership, and sign his own death warrant.
Finally, you announce that rejection of the Trump plan is a betrayal of the Palestinian people that has doomed the Palestinian cause. The mythology is dead because PA rejection has killed it.
With that, you have broken free. You can work with your neighbors — including Israel and with the U.S., on a positive future for the region and your people.
And you owe it all to a dirty little secret: the Trump plan was never about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. It was a plan to resolve the Arab/Israeli conflict.
Because only conflicts that exist in reality are resolvable.
And only real resolutions can can improve the lives of Palestinians, Israelis, or anyone else.
Bruce Abramson is the President of Informationism, Inc., a Senior Fellow at the London Center for Policy Research, and the founder of the American Restoration Institute. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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