By Mohammad Ghaderi

Analysis of the details of “the Deal of the Century”; Israel’s interests and disregarding Palestine’s rights

February 1, 2020 - 14:16

TEHRAN - U.S. President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu unveiled the "Deal of the Century", which Trump believes is the best and most effective plan for establishing peace between Palestine and Israel, as all the previous plans were fictitious. He claimed that the scheme would simultaneously meet the interests of Israel and Palestine.

But Palestinian National Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s stance on rejecting the Deal of the Century and Netanyahu’s full satisfaction with it indicate that Trump has not observed justice in the plan as he had claimed.
Announcing al-Quds (Jerusalem) as the capital of Israel, transferring US embassy from Tel Aviv to al-Quds, recognizing occupied Golan Heights for Israel, recognizing Zionist settlements in the West Bank were among the special privileges that Trump has delivered to Netanyahu.

In general, Trump’s plan, which he refers to as a two-state solution, has two political and economic aspects. From economic aspect, the plan seeks to provide $ 50 billion in aid to the future Palestinian state and to claim that it has taken step for the welfare and empowerment of Palestine. That is why Trump claimed to be empowering the Palestinians rather than giving them money because they are capable people during the unveiling ceremony.

From political aspect, issues such as recognizing al-Quds as Israel’s capital, determining borders, the statue of the Jordan Valley and the Israeli sovereignty over the settlements build after the Oslo Accord have been stated.

As Trump stated, al-Quds would be Israel’s undivided capital. He also emphasized that the plan would recognize East al-Quds as the Palestinian capital and the U.S. would open its embassy there.

The issue is vague, as on the one hand is raises the question of al-Quds’s integrity as the Israeli capital, and on the other hand, considers East al-Quds as the capital of Palestine. This suggests that Trump envisages the Palestinian capital to be located on the outskirts of al-Quds. 

Under the scheme, Jews are not allowed to buy houses from Arabs and vice versa. No area will be annexed to al-Quds, and the holy places in al-Quds will be preserved as they are. 

In the case of the Jordan Valley, it seems that, according to the deal, the Israeli sovereignty has been recognized over a part of this area. On this basis, in his remarks after Trump’s speech, Netanyahu stated that previous peace plans failed because they did not strike the “right balance” and did not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Jordan Valley, but President Trump’s plan recognized that Israel must have sovereignty in the Jordan Valley and other strategic areas of Judea and Samaria.

“Because of this historic recognition, and because I believe your peace plan strikes the right balance where other plans have failed, I’ve agreed to negotiate peace with the Palestinians on the basis of your peace plan” the Israeli prime minister also added.

Trump also announced that Jordan would supervise the holy places of al-Quds. Earlier, according to some speculations, this job was supposed to be handed over to Saudi Arabia.

Anyway, given the ignorance of Jordan’s role in the Deal of the Century, Oman is one of the opponent to the deal. Although, King Abdullah II of Jordan has strongly opposed the plan, given the country’s financial needs for Saudi Arabia, one cannot expect much from Jordan.

One of the most unilateral remarks by Trump at the ceremony was about the demarcation of Israeli-Palestinian borders. Trump stated, “We will form a joint committee with Israel to convert the conceptual map into a more detailed and calibrated rendering so that recognition can be immediately achieved”, he also added, “We will also work to create a contiguous territory within the future Palestinian State for when the conditions for statehood are met, including the firm rejection of terrorism”. In his unilateral plan, set without consulting the PNA, Trump did not even want the Palestinian to take part in defining their country’s borders. The remarks by Trump regarding the rejection of terrorism means that Palestinian resistance groups will be disarmed and indifferent in the face of armed Zionist forces. A few hours before the beginning of the unveiling ceremony, Mahmoud Abbas asked for the resistance movement’s help in a phone call with Hamas movement chief Ismail Haniyeh.

Abbas did not attend the ceremony and also refused to receive a copy of the plan offered by Washington.

Earlier to the phone call, Abbas said that we do not have missiles and planes, but we have a great will and nation. We will be on high alert and prepared in the coming days and we want everyone to be with us and we need everyone. Regarding the issue of returning Palestinian refugees, Trump said that no one would be displaced under the Deal of the Century. This could mean that returning the refugees has basically no place in the scheme. 

In fact, Trump is seeking to pressure the Palestinians and the PNA directly and through some Arab states like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the UAE to make Mahmoud Abbas back down from his stances.


 

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