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What Trump really wants for the Mideast

The unrealistic statements by US envoy Jason Greenblatt about the Palestinian Authority's ruling the Gaza Strip again might indicate that US President Donald Trump does not have a realistic plan for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

There were quite a number of people in the Israeli peace camp who hoped, even believed, in the statements made by US President Donald Trump regarding his intentions to consolidate a large “package deal” between Israel, the Palestinians and all the Arab states. The rapid pace of presidential envoy Jason Greenblatt’s jet-setting between Jerusalem and Ramallah in the West Bank also strengthened the perception that the current arch-conservative president might succeed where two liberal presidents — Bill Clinton and Barack Obama — failed.

The long hours that Greenblatt spent with top officials of both sides, and his “learning” tours of the territories, served to strengthen a certain amount of optimism. However, one sentence uttered by the envoy — his summary at the end of a tour on Aug. 30 along the length of the Gaza Strip border with Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai — turned this feeling into an illusion, and real hope into “fake hope.” Greenblatt called on the Palestinian Authority (PA) to retake control of Gaza and administer it, because the Hamas regime had failed to provide for the needs of the population. This demand is as realistic as calling on South Korea to take control of North Korea’s nuclear facilities, because the Pyongyang government does not allow its citizens freedom of expression.

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