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The Palestinians' Failed Gamble

Last week, a Palestinian delegation, led by Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas, presented a "peace plan" at the United Nations. Aside from the fact that the plan's details are nonstarters, Israel Hayom's Zalman Shoval explains why the Palestinian strategy has already failed:

U.S. President Donald Trump is one of a rare breed of politicians. Unlike his predecessors, he keeps his promises. The message the U.S. sent to the world, and the Palestinians in particular, when it announced it would open its embassy to Israel in Jerusalem as early as this May was clear: If you continue to evade peace talks, your efforts will backfire.

The Palestinian strategy is based upon the assumption that a diminishing U.S. presence and the resulting increased Russian presence in the Middle East, along with the troubled relationship between Washington and Europe, have combined to create the optimal conditions for ousting the U.S from its role of sole mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It may also be that Trump's problems at home and the questionable stability of the Israeli government have also played a role in the Palestinians' decision to push ahead with efforts to internationalize the conflict.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas made the first move in this direction when he spoke of "the Palestinian peace plan" at the U.N. Security Council last week. Although not stated outright, "the plan," a combination of the usual historical negationism and tired suggestions supposedly aimed at achieving a framework for peace with Israel, would in fact cancel the framework for direct negotiations between the two parties. It would also recalibrate U.N. Security Council Resolution 242, which ties Israel's withdrawal from territory with the demarcation of security boundaries.

The world, which is busy dealing with crises like the one with North Korea, is barely interested in the Palestinian issue...

Tags: United Nations , Israel , Palestinians

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