Photo Credit: Brett L. / Flickr CC2.0

Brett McGurk, the top White House official on the Middle East, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken are among many US officials who are trying to stitch together a peace deal that would offer the Arabs a Palestinian State that will include Gaza, and give Israel open diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia.

There are only two problems with this plan, according to a NY Times report on Saturday: “Israel’s government says it will not allow full Palestinian sovereignty, raising doubts about whether progress can be made on the major fronts; And the Israeli military campaign has not destroyed Hamas, so it is unclear how Hamas would be persuaded to step aside while it still controls part of Gaza.”


American ideas for what Israel should do next fall short of actually offering it a chair and a reliable rope with which to hang itself, but they get close.

According to the Times, the White House is considering numerous proposals, many of which are tentative, face significant challenges, or encounter strong opposition from certain factions. Some of the controversial ideas include:

1. Shifting players within the Palestinian Authority from the current chairman, Mahmoud Abbas, to a new prime minister, while allowing Abbas to maintain a ceremonial position.

2. Deploying an Arab peacekeeping force to Gaza to support a potential new Palestinian State administration in the Strip.

3. Advocating for a United Nations Security Council resolution, supported by the United States, that acknowledges the Palestinians’ right to statehood.

Chair? Check. Rope? Check. Now, find a nice beam in the ceiling and make a nice knot.

Under one suggestion, the hostages would be freed in stages during a hiatus in the war of up to 60 days, reciprocated by the release of terrorists incarcerated by Israel.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken meets with PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, May 25, 2021. / Flash90

The NYT concedes that 88-year-old Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority are commonly seen as both corrupt and authoritative. Mediators are urging Abbas to assume a more symbolic position and relinquish executive authority to a new prime minister capable of supervising Gaza’s reconstruction and curbing corruption.

Of course, as soon as such a younger and more vigorous leader takes over, the countdown will begin to the next terrorist attacks on Israel because, because on that point there’s no daylight between Ramallah and Hamas: the Jews must die so the Arabs can return to their “stolen homes” inside Israel.

US officials emphasize the objective of transforming the PA into a more credible administrator of a prospective Palestinian State. Israeli officials demand reforms in the PA’s education system, contending that it does not foster peace, and advocate for the discontinuation of welfare payments to prisoners convicted of murdering Jews.

The Americans’ darling candidate to take over the PA is Princeton Professor Salam Fayyad, the mastermind of the Fayyad Plan to edge Israel in stages out of Judea and Samaria (Arabs Invade Area C with 100 Illegal Schools Israel Can’t Take Down).

The big prize that’s being waved in front of Israeli leaders is the normalization of its relations with Saudi Arabia, complete with embassies and business deals.

But since October 7, 2023, Saudi Arabia and the United States have elevated their demands on Israel. They now stipulate that Israel must engage in a process leading to the establishment of a Palestinian State, encompassing Palestinian control of Gaza. American officials have further communicated to their Israeli counterparts that financial support from Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations for the reconstruction of Gaza is contingent upon Israeli leaders committing to a clear path toward Palestinian statehood.

The introduction of these revised terms was initially made public by Secretary of State Antony Blinken following his meeting with Prince Mohammed in a desert tent camp in Saudi Arabia earlier this month. Afterward, he conveyed them to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu upon his arrival in Tel Aviv. Both Blinken and Jake Sullivan, the White House national security adviser, reiterated these terms during a public discussion at Davos, Switzerland.

Publicly, Netanyahu has rejected this proposal, recently committing to maintaining Israel’s military control over the entire area of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. While this stance garners support from many right-wing Israelis, who may not vote for Netanyahu otherwise come the next elections, some US officials ponder whether it’s really Netanyahu’s initial negotiating position.

The US-brokered peace deal between Jerusalem and Riyadh will also depend on the Biden administration’s ability to garner the Senate’s support for a mutual defense treaty between the US and the kingdom.

In the meantime, don’t order your “Palestine from the River to the Sea” T-shirt yet, or even just your “Palestine” T-shirt.


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