-Dr. Abdul Ruff
US President Donald Trump’s Middle East tour generated a lot of enthusiasm, cynicism as well. in the global media about the prospects for peace and justice in the region in terms of resolving the worst, explosive regional crisis and human disaster in Palestine, occupied by Israel that keeps killing Palestinians possibly to take revenge on Europeans for their holocaust of Jews.
Trump’s first stop was in Saudi Arabia, where he signed a weapons deal worth $109.7 billion, the largest in history. This princely sum is expected to mushroom to $380 billion within 10 years.
By resetting America’s relations with key regional players, Trump has done what seemed unthinkable even a few months ago, promoting a message of openness, tolerance and respect of Islam and the Muslim world. Gone is the Islamophobic election rhetoric, replaced by a more sober and responsible approach. After Saudi Arabia, Trump skipped other Arab states and quickly went to Israel. The public statements by both the US President and the Israeli PM indicating that the president’s “strong position on Iran” whether advances the prospects for peace in the region or not, it cements the Israeli-US terror links against Palestine and Arab world and Iran.
Donald Trump’s visited Israel and the West Bank May 22-23, and that generated a lot of the euphoria globally as world expected him to remove the obstacles for peace talks and find a credible solution to end occupation of Palestine by Israel. Before going to Palestine, Israel first went to Israel and met Its hawkish PM Netanyahu and got instructions from him as to how to deal with Palestine. Netanyahu showed some video clips, maybe manufactured in Washington, to show the Abbas is not for peace and he is an inciter. Netanyahu told trump that well dressed Israeli leaders are innocent and hammerless. Unlike Indian leaders, Jewish leaders don’t even look innocent or harmless. Terrorism and fanaticism are their language and religion. Zionist leaders are liars.
Trump in Palestine with Zionist script
Trump arrived in Bethlehem already charged up after a meeting with ultra fanatic Israeli PM Netanyahu, who had presented material to Trump allegedly proving that the Palestinian Authority (PA) continued to be involved in incitement against Israel and also continues to pay large sums of money to Palestinians, including terrorists, imprisoned in Israel.
The Palestinians claimed that the clip shown to the president by the Israelis had been edited and taken out of context. The next day, the Palestinians sent the Americans the entire video of Abbas’ speech. According to this version of events, the unedited video proved, from the Palestinians’ perspective that Abbas did not touch on incitement or say that he is an inciter. According to the Palestinians, Abbas’ words were taken out of context through biased editing of the film. At this point, senior Fatah official Saeb Erekat intervened and told Trump that Netanyahu is the provocateur that the prime minister never stops inciting against Abbas in order to torpedo any chances for advancing negotiations.
The forty day hunger strike by Palestinian prisoners, spearheaded by Marwan Barghouti was in the background as the meeting between Trump and Abbas took place. On May 27th, the hunger strike has finally been suspended following talks involving the International Committee for the Red Cross and the Palestinian Authority concluding in a deal with Israel. The more than 1000 prisoners were attempting to raise concerns about the poor treatment of prisoners in Israeli jails. These included the practices of administrative detention allowing detentions on ‘secret evidence’, excessive use of solitary confinement, and the severe restriction of family visits.
The prisoners’ strike is an important step in history of the prisoners’ movement towards full respect of the rights of Palestinian prisoners under international law. It is also an indication of the reality of the Israeli occupation, which has left no option to Palestinian prisoners but to starve themselves to achieve basic rights they are entitled to under international law.
Trumps arrival with Israeli script caused uneasiness in Palestine. Bethlehem was not the only place where tensions rose. It has now emerged that harsh words were also uttered in the conversation between Netanyahu and Trump. Evidently the American president continued to subject the prime minister to steamroller pressure on the concessions that Israel will have to make and the need to quickly renew negotiations with the Palestinians. Netanyahu, when he appeared before the Likud faction in the Knesset on May 29 after Trump left, hinted at this. He told the Likud members, many of whom oppose negotiations, that Israel does not have a “blank check” with Trump in the diplomatic realm. One is not sure if now Israel also needs to pay huge sums for US help and support for promoting Zionist brutal expansionism and crimes against humanity in Palestine. Generally USA does all free of cost and even misuse sits UN veto to shield all Zionist crimes in Palestine. Not only that. USA supplies terror goods to Israel on a regular basis, besides huge annual aid.
A section of media reported that the conversation between Trump and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that took place in Bethlehem was harsh. The president even burst out shouting at the “prisoner with Palestinian leader- an international passport- claiming that Abbas had “deceived” him with statements about his commitment to peace at an earlier meeting between the two men in the White House. Netanyahu helped Trump to remember that incident. .
So childish and silly!
Anti-Arab US media
Trump deviated from its anti-Muslim rhetoric as he landed Saudi Arabia and later he spoke of friendly bonds between Arabs and Americans. Then he went to Israel to get charged with Zionist hate stuff before going to Palestine.
Trump has, indeed, fully embraced a ‘Zionist narrative’, and a rightwing version of it, for example, he made no reference to a Palestinian state. He said he would never forget Jews occupying Palestine. America does not find the hypocrisy of the whole endeavor.
Trump’s speech at the Israeli Museum was so friendly and considerate of Israeli emotions,” reported the New Your Times, “that one right-wing Israeli legislator described it as deeply expressive of the ‘Zionist narrative.’ Former US ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, trying to decipher the supposedly complicated persona of Trump said: “Either Trump’s visit was substance-free — or he ‘is being uncharacteristically subtle’ in planting the seeds for new round of peace negotiations.” The so-called ‘Liberal’ US media, which has stooped to many lows in its attacks on Trump – including his family, his mannerism, his choice of words, even mere body language – became much more sober and quite respectful in the way they attempted to analyze his short trip to Israel, and the very brief detour to Bethlehem, where he met with Palestinian Authority leader, Mahmoud Abbas.
From an American mainstream media perspective, to be judged “presidential” enough, all US presidents would have to commit to three main policies. They are, in no particular order: privileging the economic business elites, war at will and unconditionally supporting Israel. They have now rallied behind him on two separate occasions: when he randomly bombed Syria to showcase US military prowess and during his visit to Israel to promote Zionist criminal regime in West Asia to counter Arab nations.
As if he has, overnight, been transformed into a master politician, Donald Trump’s 27-hour trip to Israel has left many US-Zionist analysts mystified. The New York Times referred to Trump as the ‘Liberace of world leaders”.
Apparently, Trump was expected to make his first ever foreign trip to Israel but he just included Saudi Arabia and Palestine. Trump has promised to make a historic deal possible. He will soon be tested and we will see if the US can finally assume a high moral ground and facilitate an honorable deal that ends the occupation and gives Palestinians their freedom, or will it bend under Israeli pressure and claim indifference, thereby leaving the root cause of extremism and instability in this region to fester?
On the day Trump, along with rightwing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, lectured Palestinians on peace, a 17-year-old Tuqua Hammad was shot for allegedly throwing stones at Israeli military vehicles at the entrance of her village of Silwad, near Ramallah. Tuqua “was shot in the lower extremities and Israeli troops prevented a Palestinian ambulance from accessing the victim to treat her. Merely a few miles away, Trump was writing his remarks after visiting Israel’s Holocaust Museum. Regrettably, he failed to meet the expectations of the humanity against whom Zionism commits crimes. The irony of the whole story is inescapable; but American media seems to follow a script, in which Palestinian rights, dignity and freedom are hardly ever mentioned.
Palestinian emotions, however, were of no consequence, neither to the Trump entourage, nor, of course, to the New York Times or others in mainstream media. US media, as a part of their understanding of democracy, still glorify the Israeli Occupation and Israel’s mistreatment of Palestinians.
Can Trump really mean what he says?
Trump must put together the Palestine pieces to make peace
Indeed, wherever occupied Palestinians look, they find “man’s potential for great evil”: a 400-mile Israeli Wall being mostly built over their land; hundreds of military checkpoints dotting their landscape; a suffocating military occupation, controlling every aspect of their lives. They see the holiest of their cities, Bethlehem and Al-Quds – Occupied East Jerusalem – subdued by a massive military force; thousands of their leaders thrown into prison, many without charge or trial. They see siege; an endless war; daily deaths and senseless destruction. But since none of this matters to the ‘Zionist narrative’, it subsequently matters so very little to mainstream American media, as well.
Jews were allowed and guided by USA, UK and allies to create Israel in Palestine by forcefully removing or killing the Palestinians after the WWII and during the peak of Cold war. Since then Jews strengthened Israel with help from USA and allies and weakened Palestine, confiscating their lands and killing the people in a sustained manner. Palestinians are now reduced to prisoner and slaves. According to official Israeli security data, between 750,000 and 800,000 Palestinians have been arrested and imprisoned by Israel since 1967, when Israel seized and occupied Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem. This is an incredible number, equivalent to a third of the population of Israel. “You don’t understand,” a high-placed Palestinian said: around a third of our people are familiar with the inside of your prisons. Almost a million human beings have rubbed shoulders with Israeli prison guards over the last 50 years. There is hardly a Palestinian household without a shahid (who sacrifices his life for the cause of Palestine or prisoner). This is engrained deeply in our genes. No leader has been born that can change this fact.” The Palestinian people see these prisoners as those who sacrificed and took part in the war against the occupation.
In order to restart negotiations in a way that has any chance of making progress, Trump’s people will have to square the circle. They will have to mediate between two nations that speak different languages and hold completely different value systems, and more importantly, having different statuses- Israel the brutal occupier and Palestinians the occupied sufferers. Israel has strong military equipment, US terror goods, and nukes gifted by USA to threaten and attack Palestinians but Palestine has almost nothing.
The Palestinians incarcerated in Israel are viewed by the Israeli majority as despicable murderers who did not hesitate to slaughter innocent women and children. Nowadays, Israeli military targets youth and children just like India is doing in occupied Kashmir. The Palestinians, by contrast, view them as freedom fighters and assign them an almost holy status.
What is needed to somehow resolve this complex situation is a “responsible adult,” someone who will seize the authority to tell the two sides something along these lines: Fate has brought the Palestinian nation and the Israeli nation to the same plot of land. The Palestinians will not change, and evidently the Israelis won’t either. All the useless arguments must be pushed aside and focus must be placed on the core issue — courageous negotiations must be held on the core issues (borders, Jerusalem, refugees). The prisoner problem should only be addressed afterward. Any other mode of action will only perpetuate the bloody conflict that embitters everyone’s lives.
Is Trump the responsible adult who can conduct the mission? Many people might find the label “responsible adult” somewhat amusing when applied to Trump. With regard to everything connected to the negotiations, however, the president has so far revealed acute understanding, vision and execution. His problem is that the sides themselves don’t really want to enter the negotiating room, despite statements to the contrary. Netanyahu is deathly afraid of negotiations, and Abbas knows that he will be obliged to make decisions that no Palestinian leader has made before him. It is doubtful that Trump could pull it off.
Arab rulers must invest in education and infrastructure, to instill democratic values and empower women, to listen to the youth and provide them with hope. But unless the common cause of the people of this region is settled justly, the Palestinian issue will continue to be the great interrupter.
For Trump, his maiden foreign trip was a resounding success. He has secured billions of dollars in deals for America’s economy, fulfilling a key election promise to create jobs at home, and in return he has assured America’s Arab allies that the USA is reclaiming its traditional role in this part of the world, both as defender and key partner. Trump, who has a Jewish son in law at home, cannot do that if he also seeks the Zionist counsel on his foreign policy.
Why does the superpower want Zionist advices on what he must or must not do.
Trump visited Israel much earlier in his office than Obama and other presidents.
The often-impulsive Trump this time stuck to the script – his own and Zionist- and followed his repeatedly rehearsed speech and media comments to the letter. Ironically, Trump has been often judged for lacking substance on numerous occasions in the past. There is no clear message from Trump about his Mideast trip.
Former US president Barack Obama promised to open a new chapter with the Arab and Muslim worlds in his famous Cairo speech in 2009. But he was unable to deliver. A good starting point would have been to address the historic injustice that has befallen the Palestinian people for almost a century. Obama tried and failed.
That the USA, calling itself a great democracy, calls the Palestinians victims as terrorists and Israeli criminal Jews as victims is a slap on US modernism and globalism.
The trillion dollar question is if unpredictable Trump can deliver on his promise of Mideast peace. Trump must be interested in a Nobel Peace Prize that had gone to his predecessor very easily and quickly.
Americans have made Israel a spoiled terror child that exploits the weakness of USA and other nations. Can Trump really make Israel behave like a normal nation by shedding its criminal mindset? Obama in his last part of White House enjoyment tried to reign in Zionist criminal regime but failed many because he was not sincere enough. He refused to cut the aid and regular supply of terror goods to Israel.
Can President Trump do that so that Israel becomes a normal state and understands the problems of the besieged Palestinians as occupied nation?