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Trump Closes the Circle
By: Moatasem Hamadeh
September 22, 2018

With the decision to close the PLO office in Washington, the Palestinian scene has been completed in the White House:

A regional plan, entitled as the "deal of the century", which clearly delineates the objectives of the Trump administration policy in reshaping the Middle East, which it reveals very clearly, and does not disclose the details, but at the same time, it works to implement the "deal" step by step, whether in the regional affairs, or in the Palestinian affairs.

The capitals that try to evade from the "deal" or some of its clauses, hide under the shadow of the pretext that the United States has not yet revealed all the elements of its plan. At the same time, they ignore the crude statements that did not hide the direct and indirect objectives of the deal. At the same time, the official Palestinian leadership is betting on a role for the Arab states in "confronting" the deal of the century and preventing its dangers. Under this vacuum circle, the "deal" moves forward with concrete steps: through the recognition of the legitimacy of the settlements and the legitimacy of the occupation confiscation of the Palestinian land, as this deal does not object to hundreds of the settlement projects to build thousands, even tens of thousands of settlement apartments, including the Netanyahu project to absorb one million settlers in the West Bank, including 300 thousand in Jerusalem alone, in order to flood the city with the settlement element and to turn the Palestinian element into minorities like the Palestinian Arab minority in the 48 areas. Then, the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the transfer of the US embassy to it. Then, "punishing" the PA and withholding money from it, on the pretext of its commitment to the prisoners and their families and the martyrs' families that a major step in the "punishment" of UNRWA and blocking the money from it and last but not least, closing the PLO office in Washington.

An open war against the Palestinian people, its cause, national rights and institutions, in addition to an undefined support for the occupation, its policies, to the Netanyahu government, and the Zionist system of laws that is based on racial discrimination.

On the other hand, the national legislative establishment (the Central and National Councils) has assumed its responsibilities and taken strategic and tactical decisions, which constitute the basis for building a strategy to resist the occupation and its project, the "deal of the century" and its dangers, whether in the field, against the occupation and the settlement, or in the international forums (the Security Council, the General Assembly, the International Criminal Court, the World Council for Human Rights and other international agencies and organizations).

The official leadership, since 5/3/2015 has hindered the decisions of the legislative institution in the PLO, and instead, it has developed plans, steps and initiatives in the opposite direction, which, in its general context does not depart from the Oslo Accords and does not leave its political, security and economic commitments. As well as, it leads to the weakening of the national situation and the popular movement and paralyzing the political activity in international forums. So, rather than moving forward on the way to implementing what has been adopted, the policy of betting and building delusions, has remained the norm. The most recent of which, was the "President's initiative" in the UN Security Council on February 20, 2018, which renewed the declaration of allegiance to Oslo and was based on betting on the possibility of resuming the permanent status negotiations, in complete disregard of all the developments and events that made the negotiations of the permanent solution, as a mere illusion by Netanyahu and Trump.

As under the procedures and the field steps of the Netanyahu government and the Trump decisions, there is no longer anything to negotiate about. As for the Israeli-American coalition, the issues of settlement, Jerusalem and refugees have been excluded from the negotiating agenda and are no longer on it, because their fate for both sides has been settled and can no longer be debated. What remains "valid" to negotiate, is the drawing of the political, security and economic commitments that will be imposed on the Palestinian "entity" within the framework of the "permanent solution".

Even these commitments are no longer unknown, but have been announced by the alliance of the two parties: Everything will be in favor of the interests of Israel, and the Israeli security, in its broadest military, economic, financial and other sense, will be the basis of the permanent solution, the official leadership should, therefore, admit, after the decision to close the office of the PLO in Washington, that its “initiative” died in its cradle, and it is not, and will not be on the table, neither in Tel Aviv, nor in Washington. And that the continuation to build the illusions, will only result a "deal" after a "deal," and that it is time to face the deal, as promised by the Palestinian official leadership. And that it is time to be convinced that the initiative of 20/2/2018 is not a response to the "deal", but it is a call to meet with the “deal of the century” in the middle of the way, by betting on a role for some Arab capitals.

The ball is in the court of the official leadership and the Executive Committee. The official leadership is called to rebuild its relations with the Palestinian forces, from the entrance to re-establish the principles of democratic consensus and the national partnership. And to manage a responsible and inclusive national dialogue, based on the decisions of the Central Council (5/3/2015 and 15/1/2018) and the National Council (30/4/2018) as well as the proposals, submitted by the study committees, in addition to the development of the national plan for re-mobilizing the national and popular situation, in order to get out of the Oslo tunnel and restore the national program. Such these steps open the way to ending the division, rearranging the status of the PLO and mobilizing all elements of the Palestinian force. In this context, the Executive Committee is called on to move from the "consultative meetings" stage to the stage of being responsible for the Palestinian national decision and its implementation in all fields of struggle. At the same time paying attention to the fact that, the "national law" within the 48 areas , has created a historic leap in restoring the relationship between the components of the Palestinian people in all its places of existence and stressed the need to close the pages of Oslo and the bet on their remains.

Trump has closed the circle and completed the scene, so, there is no reason to talk about waiting for what will be revealed by his plan and deal. As his plan is an open war in all fields against the Palestinian people. And the policy of waiting and betting on empty illusions would only encourage both Trump and Netanyahu, to give more slaps to the faces of these bettors.

Notes:Moatasem Hamadeh is a member of the Political Bureau of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Translated by Manal Mansour
Revised by Ibrahim Motlaq

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