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Mike Pence Trump Middle East plan: Why it was announced now


Mike Pence

Mike Pence Trump Middle East plan: Why it was announced now

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Palestinians do not support the US President’s peace plan The Palestinians have roundly rejected Donald Trump’s Middle East proposal, feeling the cards are stacked against them. The plan recognises and legitimises the Jewish settlements built on occupied Palestinian territory, which are regarded as illegal under international law – although…

Mike Pence Trump Middle East plan: Why it was announced now

Mike Pence

Mike Pence Palestinians protest against President Trump's Middle East peace plan by burning a poster of Mr Trump Image copyright
Getty Images

Image caption

Palestinians do not support the US President’s peace plan.

The Palestinians have actually roundly turned down Donald Trump’s Middle East proposal, feeling the cards are stacked against them.

The plan recognises and legitimises the Jewish settlements constructed on occupied Palestinian territory, which are concerned as unlawful under international law – although Israel conflicts this.

It would see Israel annex large swathes of the most fertile Palestinian land and gives total security control of the West Bank to Israel in any future “state”.

Those are just the headings, and none are acceptable to the Palestinians.

Prior to revealing the proposal on Tuesday, Mr Trump even intimated that he understood Palestinian leaders would feel that method and would decline it.

So why release the plan at all? How does it all assist the US president? And why now?

Mike Pence Statesman Trump backing Bibi

Israeli opposition figures have actually not shied away from recommending that the timing of the proposition’s release was aimed at assisting Benjamin Netanyahu in a basic election to be hung on 2 March.

Prime Minister Netanyahu could barely include his glee at the press conference as he stood next to President Trump, his entourage cheering rapturously. The unprecedented concessions used to Israel under the strategy are something he can offer back house as a result of a close and influential relationship he has with the White House.

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Media caption Netanyahu: Trump’s peace plan is “the offer of the century”

Trump administration authorities have actually declined the idea that the timing is designed to enhance Mr Netanyahu, pointing to the reality that they had already waited two undetermined Israeli election cycles prior to announcing the Middle East strategy.

There is little doubt though that the Israeli prime minister will hope this will sidetrack from the charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust that he faces – charges he depicts as “phony news” and a witch-hunt by the left and by the media.

That, obviously, has been a familiar refrain of President Trump with concerns to the present inquiry into his own behaviour.

The impeachment accusations suggest sordid and dishonourable usage of his powerful position for personal political gain; keeping numerous countless dollars of military support to Ukraine up until Kiev opened investigations into Joe Biden and his boy, Hunter.

Mr Trump may hope the unveiling of his proposal would provide Americans a contrasting narrative of his abilities as a statesman, delivering “the offer of the century”.

Mike Pence US domestic pressures

White Evangelical Christian Americans formed a strong ballot block for Donald Trump in 2016, with around 80%voting for him.

Numerous Evangelical Christians think that God guaranteed the Holy Land to Jews and that their return to power across the entire territory will bring about the 2nd Coming of Christ.

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Media caption Why the ancient city of Jerusalem is so important

However that is not only assisting to form policy due to the fact that President Trump wants their votes once again in November.

There are likewise Evangelicals within the Trump administration itself, like Vice-President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who have supposedly been pushing for the kind of support for Israel’s expansionist aspirations as detailed in the new strategy.

Those goals all however eliminate the idea of having sovereign Palestinian and Israeli states existing side by side, as previous US administrations had stated they desired.

Evangelical Christians were big financial backers of the Trump project in 2016, however there were others who would have desired to see some return on the assistance they provided throughout the last election reflected in this proposal.

Aipac, the effective pro-Israel lobbying group, has actually currently endorsed Mr Trump’s Middle East strategy, stating it appreciated the efforts of the president.

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Media caption Is Palestinian-Israel peace plan of reach?

And among those in the East Room of the White House as the strategy was revealed was “megadonor” Sheldon Adelson. The gambling establishment billionaire paid 10s of countless dollars into Republican coffers and an estimated $20 million to the Trump project in 2016.

He was vocally encouraging of the relocation to acknowledge Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, even providing to assist spend for a new US embassy there. He cheered on the president as details of the brand-new proposition were read out.

Whether the strategy and the timing of its release has to do with backing Mr Netanyahu, sidetracking from impeachment problems, playing domestic politics or if it is certainly driven by ideology, it includes substantial dangers.

It can be viewed as a proposition that offers Israel the authorisation to widen its occupation, already a source of misery for so numerous. The fear is that a proposition that offers Palestinians so little hope is one that also strengthens hard-liners throughout the area.

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