As the unveiling of US President Donald Trump’s “deal of the century” remains uncertain and probably postponed, the international community has pitted itself against the proposal and deeming it an incentive to stand unequivocally in favor of the two-state compromise, which UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has repeatedly described as the only possibility. In the US, a similar scenario is taking place.
A resolution drafted by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen has raised Israel’s ire for its endorsement of the two-state compromise. Israeli diplomats, it was reported, have been lobbying for the removal of the two-state clause.
Palestinians, on the other hand, have been eliminated from the process except for necessary reference, and this is not due to the Palestinian Authority’s refusal to entertain US prospects of a deal. Its insistence on the two-state compromise has gradually eroded the focus from Palestinian rights to the PA’s willingness to accommodate the international community. Hence, the PA’s stance is just a continuation of the façade it committed itself to since its establishment.
Last April, former EU diplomats insisted that the bloc should “formally reaffirm” its agreement to the two-state paradigm and refute the US plan. The reason, however, was the EU’s international standing as regards its purported peace-building role, rather than Palestinian rights which are non-existent in the two-state hypothesis.
With a prolonged diplomatic confrontation between the US and the international community over which plan to follow for Palestine, and with the PA persistently advocating for the two-state despite the losses Palestinians have incurred, the last shards of pretense were eliminated.
Not one single entity has proposed the obvious – ask the Palestinian people what they want – lest there is a departure from the historical process of international interference which created a colonial entity in Palestine. Instead, the diplomatic battleground was extended to create a parallel where external actors’ decision-making is only concerned with what benefits their meddling will reap to enhance their international standing.
The same process is now being repeated in the US, pitting proponents of the two-state against Trump’s deal. Had the Trump administration not concocted a new plan to fail Palestinians, the entire international community would have intermittently continued to coerce Palestinians into its diplomacy. With two prospects spelling disaster for Palestinians, the race as to who will fail Palestinians first has begun.
As the PA continues to limit itself to a choice between both disastrous options, it is aiding a complete manipulation of Palestinian rights. PA leader Mahmoud Abbas’ refusal to entertain US scheming holds no value while his faction is still supporting another form of facilitating Israel’s colonization of Palestine.
Indeed, the PA’s stance is reminiscent of Jared Kushner’s refusal to discuss a two-state hypothesis, in terms of how detrimental both outcomes are for Palestinians.
While pretending to oppose Trump’s deal, the international community is pushing for a paradigm that covertly leads to the same outcomes. It is only because of the widespread hostility that Trump has generated since taking office, that the illusion of two camps for a solution has become ingrained and which is now being played out across the world in complete conformity.
– Ramzy Baroud is a journalist, author and editor of Palestine Chronicle. His last book is ‘The Last Earth: A Palestinian Story’ (Pluto Press, London). Baroud has a Ph.D. in Palestine Studies from the University of Exeter and was a Non-Resident Scholar at Orfalea Center for Global and International Studies, University of California Santa Barbara. His website is www.ramzybaroud.net
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