Author`s name Lyuba Lulko

The deal of the century is a deal only for Trump and Netanyahu

The "deal of the century" that was designed by Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu for the regulation of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is a worthless piece of paper the purpose of which is to grab media attention to improve the stained images of the two politicians, Vladimir Vasilyev, an Americanologist believes.

What the "deal of the century" is about

Donald Trump came up with a joint plan with Israel to create the independent state of Palestine, provided that the Palestinians recognize Israeli sovereignty over illegal settlements in the West Bank.

Trump stated during at a press conference in the White House, standing next to Prime Minister Netanyahu, that his proposals "could be the last opportunity" for the Palestinians.

"My vision presents a "win-win" opportunity for both sides, a realistic two-state solution that resolves the risk of Palestinian statehood to Israel's security," Donald Trump said.

"The deal of the century," as Trump described it, includes the following:

  • The United States recognizes Israel's sovereignty over the territory, which, according to the Trump plan, is part of Israel. Trump publishes this map on his Twitter. Palestinian enclaves account for only 15% of what is called "the historical Palestine" (before 1948, when Israel was founded) and about 60% of the borders before 1967 - the six-day war of the Arabs with Israel.
  • Trump is ready to cede East Jerusalem to the Palestinians as the capital, where, according to Trump, the US will open its embassy. However, Jerusalem will remain the undivided capital of Israel. A closer look shows that the land for the Palestinians is located in the eastern suburbs of Jerusalem and not inside the historical borders of the city.
  • An opportunity for the Palestinians to create their own independent state. However, the plan does not provide for its immediate recognition. No Palestinian or Israeli will be expelled from their homes, the plan says, which provides for the preservation of existing Jewish settlements in the West Bank of Jordan, which Israel occupies.
  • Israel will cooperate with the King of Jordan to ensure the status quo of the holiest site in Jerusalem, known as the Temple Mount or as Haram al-Sharif, as Muslim people call it.
  • The territory allotted to the Palestinians will remain open and will not be populated for four years. During this time, the Palestinians will be able to study the deal, negotiate with Israel and achieve the criteria of statehood.
  • The State of Palestine will emerge in four years if the Palestinians accept this plan, if the Palestinian Authority stops paying terrorists and inciting terrorism, and if Hamas and Islamic Jihad lay down their arms.
  • In addition, the US-Israeli plan calls on the Palestinians to abandon corruption, respect human rights, freedom of religion and freedom of the press. If these conditions are met, the United States will recognize the state and implement a large-scale economic plan to support it.

Palestine's reaction to the "deal of the century"

Mahmoud Abbas, the President of Palestine (which Israel considers its autonomy) rejected the plans as a "conspiracy."

"I want to say to Trump and Netanyahu -- Jerusalem is not for sale. All our rights are not for sale or for compromise. Your deal is a conspiracy and it will not work," Abbas said in a news conference in Ramallah in the West Bank.

"The Palestinian people deserve to live on their land," Abbas added.

"We tell the world: we are not terrorists and will never be them," he said.

Abbas also said that the Palestinians would immediately start taking steps to change the "functional role of the [Palestinian] administration" in order to implement the recommendations made by the institutions of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) over the past two years. Apparently, it goes about the efforts to stop cooperation with Israel in the field of security.

The union of two toxic politicians - Trump and Netanyahu

Vladimir Vasilyev, chief researcher at the Institute of the USA and Canada of the Russian Academy of Sciences, told Pravda.Ru that the peace plan per se is nothing but a worthless piece of paper. It appeared against the backdrop of the political situation inside the United States and in Israel, the expert said.

According to him, against the background of the impeachment process, Trump's peace plan is a form of gentle pressure on the Democratic faction in the Senate, taking into consideration the fact that main sponsor is the pro-Israeli lobby.

"The Democrats were told: You see, we accept your plans, we accept the resolution of the Palestinian problem on the principles of the two states, as was stated in the UN Security Council resolution from 1948, and in this regard our position today is no different from yours. Trump is a person who offers the deal of the century, and you want to impeach him," the expert said.

As for Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel is facing severe problems in his homeland, where he faces charges of corruption. He may lose the post of the prime minister and appear as a participant in a criminal case.

"This led to the creation of a union of two politicians, who found themselves in difficult situations. Trump is appealing to the pro-Israeli lobby and says that he enjoys the support of Israel. Netanyahu says that he enjoys the support of the US administration. One barber shaves another gratis," said Vladimir Vasiliev.

According to the expert, as soon as the threat of impeachment goes, the Trump administration will quickly move away from this plan or let it drop under the pretext of the contradictory nature of Palestine. Netanyahu likes the idea too.

What the world thinks about the "deal of the century"

The Palestinians want the West Bank to be the core of a future independent state, and see Israeli settlements (nearly 500,000 Israelis) as an obstacles to their dream of independence. The international community supports this view and overwhelmingly considers Jewish settlements illegitimate. After the capture of the West Bank during the war in the Middle East in 1967, Israel has been expanding its settlements without reserving their annexation. The UN condemned the Jewish settlements as illegal, but refrained from imposing sanctions or severe penalties.

However, before the March parliamentary elections, Netanyahu's Likud party and the Blue and White party of his opponent, Benny Gantz, stated in their programs that they would extend the Israeli jurisdiction to the occupied lands, which, in essence, means their annexation.

Yuval Shany, an international law expert at the Israel Democracy Institute, said that the annexation would significantly increase the risk of the criminal prosecuton of Israel in the International Criminal Court (ICC). The court will view the settlements illegal on the basis of the Geneva Convention, according to which the occupying power is prohibited from moving its population to conquered territories.

  • EU officials said that they would look into Trump's proposals before giving an objective assessment. EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell said that both the Palestinians and the Israelis need "new inclusive negotiations."
  • The UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, stated that the borders of Palestine and Israel should be determined by the accords from 1967.
  • The Turkish Foreign Ministry condemned Trump's peace plan. According to representatives of the Turkish Foreign Ministry, this plan is "stillborn."
  • Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that one should find out the point of view of Palestine on the subject. At a press conference in Moscow, he noted that the Russian side had not studied the initiative nor had it received any details of the proposal from US counterparts.