It is absolutely clear that the “plan” released today by the Trump administration stands zero chance of serving as the basis for renewed diplomacy to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Instead, it is the logical culmination of repeated bad-faith steps this administration has taken to validate the agenda of the Israeli right, prevent the achievement of a viable, negotiated two-state solution and ensure that Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian territory in the West Bank becomes permanent.
All parties — and especially Israeli leaders — must understand that the president’s ‘peace sham’ does not and will not represent the true interests and future policy of the United States. It contravenes the expressed will of the US House of Representatives, which just weeks ago passed a resolution that opposed unilateral Israeli annexation in the West Bank, asserted longstanding US opposition to settlement expansion and reaffirmed that any viable US peace plan must include support for a negotiated two-state solution.
By endorsing Israeli sovereignty over vast portions of the occupied West Bank, the president and his team appear to be empowering Israeli leaders to carry out unilateral annexations that would flagrantly violate international law, trample on the rights of Palestinians and grossly endanger Israel’s future as a democratic homeland for the Jewish people. They are discarding decades of bipartisan US policy in favor of a destructive effort that is certain to exacerbate the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, empower the most dangerous extremists on both sides and destabilize Israel’s already tenuous relationship with Jordan.
The timing of this announcement, coinciding with the formal indictment of Prime Minister Netanyahu and the impeachment trial of President Trump, only underscores that it is a cynical political maneuver entirely lacking in diplomatic credibility. Coming in the midst of an Israeli election campaign, this is an attempt to hand the prime minister a political gift and a distraction from the very serious charges he is facing.
This is a time when those who care about the future of Israel, the rights of Palestinians and the principles of US foreign policy cannot remain silent. This dangerous new provocation and the prospect of unilateral annexations in the West Bank require an urgent, unequivocal response from responsible American lawmakers and presidential candidates.
President Trump, Ambassador Friedman and their far-right supporters are working to undermine Israeli democracy, sabotage genuine diplomacy and codify a status quo of permanent conflict and occupation. We must do everything we can to stop them.
Ask your representative to condemn Trump's plan and strongly oppose unilateral annexation by signing onto the Levin-Lowenthal letter.