On Jan. 28, 2020, President Donald Trump unveiled his long-awaited plan for the Middle East. The plan is a two-state solution that provides an opportunity for the Palestinian people to become a state if they make some necessary changes. It also gives Israel sovereignty over the Golan and allows its capital to be in Jerusalem, while the proposed Palestinian state’s capital would be in East Jerusalem.
As a Christian Zionist, I don’t want to give my 100% stamp of approval on this plan. To me, the ideal plan is a one-state solution, but we have to understand the current environment of politics and the fact that we must respect the needs and desires of both sides. I discuss my thoughts on the matter in depth in my podcast today.
I want to go on record as saying that I applaud President Trump for taking this step. He has made a lot of promises and he has worked hard to keep his promises, and this is one of the main promises—to be able to support Israel and also the Palestinian people. If Donald Trump is anything, he’s a great negotiator. He knows how to put deals together. He knows how to find commonality with people on all sides, whether it’s real estate developments in downtown Manhattan or if it’s international trade policies or treaties, like he’s recently made with China as well as the USMCA (United States, Mexico and Canada Agreement). Both of these were historic.
The situation in the Middle East has been a stalemate. There’s been a lot of violence, a lot of tension. And this report, I think, is brilliant in the sense that it sets a four-year time frame in which the Palestinians can get rid of the terrorism, get rid of some of the bad leaders. They have to show that they really want to support this peace plan and that they are willing to recognize Israel and cooperate with Israel.
It’s really up to the people in the region to decide what to do and to determine their own destiny. America is just a catalyst, as we have been in many ways. As I read this, it doesn’t seem to be that we are imposing our will. We are just encouraging the various sides to decide what is best for them, but also providing economic incentives to try to make it happen.
I am hopeful that something very good will come of this. I congratulate the president on being a visionary. In fact, their statement kept calling this the vision. This is the vision of what could happen.
I encourage you to read the White House’s analysis below:
BOLD VISION FOR PEACE: President Donald J. Trump recognizes it is time for a new approach to achieve peace, security, dignity, and opportunity for Israel and the Palestinian people.
- This Vision is the most serious, realistic, and detailed plan ever presented, one that could make Israelis, Palestinians, and the region safer and more prosperous.
- This Vision is just the first step and provides the basis for historic progress toward peace. The United States hopes this Vision will lead to direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.
- It will be up to Israeli and Palestinian leaders to take courageous and bold actions to end the political stalemate, resume negotiations on the basis of this Vision, and make lasting peace and economic prosperity a reality.
- If the Palestinians have concerns with this Vision, they should bring them forth in the context of good-faith negotiations with the Israelis and help make progress for the region.
- Mere opposition to this Vision is simply a declaration of support for the hopeless status quo that is the product of decades of stale thinking.
DIPLOMATIC ACCOMPLISHMENT: President Trump is bringing together Israeli political rivals in support of a detailed vision for peace and promoting normalized relations between Israel and its neighbors.
- President Trump secured agreement from both Prime Minister Netanyahu and opposition leader Lieutenant General Benny Gantz to come to Washington, where they agreed to use this Vision as a basis for negotiation.
- For the first time in this conflict, President Trump has reached an understanding with Israel regarding a map setting forth borders for a two-state solution.
- President Trump has been bringing historic enemies in the region closer together, and his actions are promoting normalized relations between Israel and its neighbors.
MUTUAL RECOGNITION AND INDEPENDENCE: This Vision proposes a realistic two-state solution, offering a viable path to Palestinian statehood.
- Israel has now agreed to terms for a future Palestinian State.
- The Vision aims to achieve mutual recognition of the State of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people and the future State of Palestine as the nation-state of the Palestinian people, with equal civil rights for all citizens within each state.
- The Vision creates a path for the Palestinian people to realize their legitimate aspirations for independence, self-governance, and national dignity.
- Under this Vision, neither Palestinians nor Israelis will be uprooted from their homes.
ISRAEL’S SECURITY: This Vision takes into account the realities on the ground and fully protects Israel’s security.
- The Vision fully addresses Israel’s security requirements, does not ask Israel to take additional security risks, and enables Israel to defend itself by itself against any threats.
- The Vision provides for a demilitarized Palestinian state living peacefully alongside Israel, with Israel retaining security responsibility west of the Jordan River.
- Over time, the Palestinians will work with United States and Israel to assume more security responsibility as Israel reduces its security footprint.
JERUSALEM AND HOLY SITES: Israel will continue to safeguard Jerusalem’s Holy Sites and will guarantee freedom of worship for Jews, Christians, Muslims, and people of all faiths.
- The status quo at the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif will be preserved.
- The special and historic role of the King of Jordan with regard to the Muslim Holy Shrines in Jerusalem will be preserved.
- All Muslims are welcome to peacefully visit al-Aqsa Mosque.
FUTURE STATE OF PALESTINE: The Vision delivers significant territorial expansion for Palestinians and designates land reasonably comparable in size to the West Bank and Gaza for the establishment of the State of Palestine.
- Israel has agreed to a four-year land freeze to secure the possibility of a two-state solution.
- Jerusalem will stay united and remain the capital of Israel, while the capital of the State of Palestine will be Al-Quds and include areas of East Jerusalem.
- The Vision’s map will more than double the size of the land currently used by the Palestinians.
- Beyond territory, the Vision provides for Palestinian use and management of facilities at the Haifa and Ashdod ports, Palestinian development of a resort area on the north shore of the Dead Sea, and continued Palestinian agricultural activity in the Jordan Valley.
- The Vision proposes modern and efficient transportation links for easy travel and movement of goods throughout the future state of Palestine, including Gaza and the West Bank.
NORMALIZATION: This Vision will end the refugee status quo and help put the region on a truly transformative path: one with stability, security, and abundant opportunities for prosperity.
- The Middle East needs strong regional partnerships to counter Iran and terrorism, strengthen security, and unlock vast opportunities for economic investment and regional prosperity.
- President Trump has cultivated these regional partnerships, helping historic enemies identify shared threats and mutually beneficial opportunities, facilitating the prospect of normalized relationships between Israel and its neighbors.
- This Vision will serve as a strong platform from which to further improve regional dynamics and strengthen regional partnerships.
- Under this Vision, Palestinian refugees will be given a choice to live within the future State of Palestine, integrate into the countries where they currently live, or resettle in a third country.
- The United States will work with the international community to establish a generous trust to aid in the process of resettling refugees.
PROSPERITY ACROSS THE REGION: This Vision, combined with the Peace to Prosperity economic framework, will unlock the potential of a region long held hostage by conflict.
- The Vision incorporates the massive $50 billion Peace to Prosperity economic plan, which will spur the Palestinian economy.
- When properly implemented, the Vision will:
- Create more than 1 million new jobs;
- More than double Palestinian GDP; and
- Reduce unemployment below 10% and cut the poverty rate in half.
I encourage you to listen to my podcast to hear more about this important topic. You can click here to listen. And if you like what you hear, take a moment to subscribe to my podcast and leave me a review.