Trump envoy says joint Israeli-US commission to finalize ‘conceptual’ proposal, ensure ‘contiguous territory’ for Palestinian state; urges Palestinians to join talks
By Ted Belman.
Jared Kushner just said it will take “a couple of months” to complete work on detailed West Bank maps before Israel will be able to annex settlements and the Jordan Valley.”
Accordingly, Israel can “annex” in two months. Since the settlements are not illegal according to Pres Trump, Israel can annex now and wait for two months before she has American approval. I don’t see why Israel should wait til the approval is there. Who cares. Its going to happen anyways in two months.
Also, I do not believe that detailed maps are needed. For many decades the settlements have been confined to certain boundaries agreed between the US and Israel. For starters, Israel law should be applied to all the land and people within those boundaries. And should also encompass all access roads. If the technical teams want to expand those boundaries they can do that in two months but the boundries have already been agreed upon.
So if it is not the need for technical teams, what is the delay about? Perhaps, what Kushner is trying to do is get Bibi elected on the promise of annexation. To “annex” before the elections could remove the need for Bibi to be Prime Minister and cause him to lose the elections. But the perponderance of opinion on the right is “annex” now before the elections when we can do it rather than gamble till after a government is formed. The new government may not support “annexation”.
He also said the 180-page plan “was what we got Israel to agree to”. What does that mean? At best it is a memo of understanding between the US and Israel. But no one is bound by it and certainly it doesn’t mean that Israel can’t later object to any part of it. A sort of agreed roadmap which doesn’t make it binding. This roadmap doesn’t make annexation contingent on anything. It is just an early step along the way. It reminds me when Israel was asked in 2003 to agree to the U.S. Roadmap to which it had 13 reservations, Powell said to Sharon, agree to it anyway. After all, its only a Roadmap”. He also promised in that same conversation to seriously take Israel’s reservations into account but never did.