Trump Still Says ‘Good Chance’ for Middle East Peace Deal

Will Trump achieve Middle East peacel? U.S. President Donald Trump (left) meets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). Illustrative. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon (GPO)

Despite the lack of apparent progress towards an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal and even as the Palestinians have come under pressure for paying terrorists, United States President Donald Trump still has hope. “We are giving it an absolute go,” said Trump of efforts to achieve peace in comments during Monday’s visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “I think there’s a good chance that it could happen.”

Trump acknowledged in the comments, which were posted to the White House website, that “most people would say there’s no chance whatsoever,” but he believes in Netanyahu and the Palestinian leadership.

“I actually think with the capability of Bibi and, frankly, the other side, I really think we have a chance,” Trump said in his statement, referring to Netanyahu by his nickname. Netanyahu, meanwhile, had an even bigger goal in mind.

“We will discuss the way we can seize the opportunity for peace between Israel and the Palestinians and between Israel and the Arab World,” said Netanyahu in the comments with Trump. “I think these things go together, and we look forward to talking about how we can advance both.”

The other topic highlighted during their meeting was Iran, as expected. Netanyahu said that he was looking forward to discussing with Trump “how we can address together what you rightly call is the terrible nuclear deal with Iran and how to roll back Iran’s growing aggression in the region, especially in Syria.”

The Trump Administration has repeatedly reproached Iran for their support for terrorism and other destabilizing activities. Iran has reach into the conflicts in Syria and Yemen, and also sponsors Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza.

A key question is whether or not Trump will potentially start to scuttle the Iran nuclear deal by officially accusing Iran of non-compliance in his next certification of the arrangement in October. Trump continues to be coy on the matter, only again telling the media, “You’ll be seeing very soon,” in response to whether or not he plans to keep the Americans in the multinational deal.

Another major policy point still up in the air is the status of the two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians. Trump has made it clear in the past he will support whatever solution the sides reach. That continued on Monday. When asked about the two-state solution, Trump just responded, “We’ll see.”

Meanwhile, Trump does want to see peace achieved and he thinks the sides do too.

“I think Israel would like to see it, and I think the Palestinians would like to see it. And I can tell you that the Trump administration would like to see it,” said Trump. “We’re working very hard on it. We’ll see what happens. Historically, people say it can’t happen. I say it can happen.”

(By Joshua Spurlock,, September 18, 2017)

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