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President Trump and Secretary of State Tillerson are quickly learning that tough talk is needed to rein in Mahmoud Abbas – who has deceived Trump and Tillerson twice in the last month.
1. Abbas sweet-talked Trump at the White House on 3 May claiming:
“we are raising our youth, our children, our grandchildren on a culture of peace.”Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu quickly responded on 4 May:
“I heard President Abbas yesterday say that Palestinians teach their children peace. That’s unfortunately not true. They name their schools after mass murders of Israelis and they pay terrorists”Trump blasted Abbas in Bethlehem on 23 May:
“You tricked me in D.C.! You talked there about your commitment to peace, but the Israelis showed me your involvement in incitement”
2. Tillerson too was made to look stupid after he had told a Senate hearing on 13 June that he had been informed that Abbas intended ceasing the policy of payments to terrorists.
Tillerson’s claim was immediately repudiated by Issa Qaraqe, the head of the PA prisoners affairs department:
“This is not true and this statement is an aggression against the Palestinian people”Such duplicity does not augur well for creating an environment hoping to end the Jewish-Arab conflict.
Straight talking from Trump is needed to:
1. Bury the negotiating process between Abbas and Netanyahu that torpedoed the attempts by President Obama and Secretaries of State Clinton and Kerry to end the conflict between 2009 and 2016.
2. Terminate the artificially contrived framework misnamed “the two-state solution” within which previous negotiations have been conducted between Abbas and Netanyahu with total disregard for the origins of the conflict between Jews and Arabs.
That conflict began with the creation by the League of Nations of the Mandate for Palestine on 24 July 1922 following decisions taken by the Principal Allied Powers at the San Remo Conference and the Treaty of Sevres in 1920 following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War 1.
The League of Nations by unanimous resolution of all member States – including Iran – laid down a formula that would see the reconstitution of the Jewish National Home being restricted to an area comprising no more than 23 per cent of the territory covered by the Mandate
In 1946 an Arab State was created in the remaining 77 per cent of Mandatory Palestine and was renamed “the Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan”.
In 1948 Israel was created in 17per cent of the territory of the Mandate whilst the remaining 6 percent – Judea and Samaria, Gaza – was conquered and occupied by Transjordan (renamed Jordan in 1950) and Egypt respectively until their loss to Israel in the 1967 Six Day War.
Abbas is but the latest in a long line of failed leaders of the Palestinian Arabs who have rejected all attempts to resolve the conflict based on what was internationally agreed 95 years ago.
Jordan has been exculpated from playing any role in resolving this conflict it was part of from the very inception of the Mandate and which it substantially aggravated between 1948 and 1967.
Trump and Tillerson belong to the old school that uses language whose meaning cannot be misinterpreted.
Hopefully the days of diplomatic doublespeak and ambiguous language are nearing their end.
Bringing Jordan into any new negotiations to finally determine the allocation of sovereignty in Judea and Samaria (West Bank) – an area smaller than Delaware – is the key to Trump pulling off the deal of the century.