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December 11, 2016 7:21 am

Where the Trump Administration Should Start on Israeli-Palestinian Peace

avatar by Mitchell Kaye

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South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, who Donald Trump will nominate to be the US ambassador to the United Nations. Photo: Facebook.

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, Trump’s nominee for UN ambassador. Photo: Facebook.

President-elect Donald J. Trump said during the campaign that he would “love” to broker a deal between Israel and the Palestinians. Although he has been advised by many experts that a deal may be impossible, can the “master deal-maker” make one?

More than 2,500 years ago, Chinese philosopher Laozi said, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” President Trump should take these first steps at the United Nations to facilitate a Mideast peace process:

1. Change the UN definition of a Palestinian refugee. Since time immemorial, refugees have been defined as persons who were personally displaced outside their countries. The problem is eventually reduced as refugees are either resettled, or pass away. This applies to every refugee group, except the Palestinians. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) says that every Arab descendant of 1948 refugees is himself also a refugee. By this definition, the UN has exacerbated the problem. In 1950, there were about 750,000 Palestinian refugees; today the number is 5 million and growing. By comparison, 850,000 Jews were forced to flee the Arab or Muslim world in 1948, and have not been dependent on anyone for decades.

2. Reform the refugee Camps. Many Palestinian live in squalid camps under the control and jurisdiction of their Arab brethren. There are eight such camps in Gaza, 19 in Judea and Samaria, 13 in Syria, 12 in Lebanon and 10 in Jordan. These Arab countries and governments deny these Palestinians many basic rights and government services, treating them as hostages and pawns to ferment anti-Israel violence and to perpetuate the false hope that one day they will return to their homes under the “right of return.” They do this to divert attention from their corrupt and dictatorial regimes. Arabs and Muslims living in Israel have more rights and freedoms than any other country in the Middle East. Israel is not the problem; it’s the solution.

3. UN-funded textbooks must not demonize Israel and Jews. By controlling the textbooks, Palestinian leaders are poisoning the minds of future generations, inciting them to violence against Israel, and making peace impossible. Furthermore, no UN facility should be used as a staging area for military action, nor as a safe haven for terrorists. During the 2014 Gaza conflict, many of the 88 UNWRA schools were turned into military bases and arms depots, protecting Palestinian terrorists and murderers.

4. A two-state solution has been ingrained in public consciousness, but is a misnomer. What two states is it referring to? The West Bank is controlled by the secular Fatah, while Gaza is controlled by Islamic Hamas. They are bitter enemies. Will it be a two-state or a three-state solution? And even if the Palestinians can get on the same page, how do we know they can actually be a state — given their inability to carry out even the most basic of services.

Donald Trump understands that successful peace negotiations cannot be imposed from the outside, but must be negotiated by the parties themselves. For too long, the Palestinians have avoided direct contact with Israel, preferring to let the Quartet or UN try and squeeze Israel for concessions without having to give up anything in return.

The constant flow of anti-Israel resolutions at the UN, including efforts to erase historical Jewish heritage sites by UNESCO, can only point to one conclusion — that the UN has been a major impediment to peace.

President Trump, with the assistance of his UN ambassador nominee Nikki Haley, has an opportunity to drain the swamp of the United Nations. Changing the UN mindset and culture would be a great first step for peace.

Mitchell Kaye served five terms in the Georgia House of Representatives and led the local elected officials coalition for the Trump Campaign in Georgia.  

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  • watsa46

    Did DT or his team ask anyone to spine on the IL-Pal conflict?
    The UN under the control of the Islamic states is the EPICENTER of International antisemitism. SuShi Islamofascism is in control at the UN and needs to be destroyed.

  • Edward Cohen

    “Israel is not the problem; it’s the solution.”
    That may be understood as an invitation to all these refugees to move to Israel, but that is clearly not your intention.

    • watsa46

      The real problem is the 2,000 years old war of the West against the Jews!!!

  • Efram Paul

    I do not know how this could be accomplished, but it would be nice if it could.

  • The U.S. contributes 22% toward the UN’s budget. (Click on link below)

    UN ambassador nominee Nikki Haley should recommend the U.S. Congress withhold American contributions until the UN reforms. One of the first UN reforms must be the elimination of redundant programs like the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) already has a mandate to help settle people.

  • Ruth-Claire Weintraub

    Please refrain from assuming that a wealthy narcissistic racist who is already in violation of the US Constitution is going to be inaugurated.

  • food4thought

    “…pawns to ferment anti-Israel violence”
    I trust the writer meant “foment”!! Where was the copy editor when you needed her/him??

  • Joy Daniels Brower

    “Changing the UN mindset and culture” sounds like a fool’s errand. But if Trump/Haley can work to lessen the hatred toward Israel and the Jews, something substantive might be accomplished.

  • John from GA

    Great article, he should join Haley at the UN