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Israeli troops clash with Palestinians marking Hebron massacre

25 February 2017

Others, however, saw this statement as simply stating that the terms of the peace deal will have to be negotiated by both parties, and the United States will not impose terms on the parties.

Donald Trump's nominee to be ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, said in a radio interview right before the election that he believed Israelis had just as much a right, if not a greater right, as the Palestinians to control the West Bank.

Victor Boştinaru, a Romanian member of the S&D group, urged MEPs not to give up on the peace process: "The two-state solution and the mutual recognition of the 1967 borders, with mutually agreed land swaps and Jerusalem as the capital of both states, remains the only hope for peace".

Inside Story - What happens to global support for two-state solution? Friedman's comments reflect his hardline views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, many of which depart from longtime USA policy on the issue.

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But that's an overly simplistic interpretation of a deeply complex situation.

The second issue that stood out in the press conference was on the question of Israeli settlements. On this question at least, Trump seems to have both gotten some cautionary advice on the issue and actually listened to it.

"This Delegation will continue working to ensure the European Union steps up its diplomatic efforts, effectively implements its labeling guidelines with regard to settlement products, and builds a fully-fledged policy of differentiation in all its dealings with Israel, respecting global law which is the cornerstone of European Union policy in this matter", he said. It is important to keep in mind, however, that Trump was only referring to new settlement building and not existing settlements in the occupied West Bank, which now number 130, are populated by 400,000 settlers, and along with their regional councils, constitute nearly 40 percent of the West Bank.

The peace talks between Israel and Palestine have been stalled since April 2014. What this rabbit-hole fantasy forgets is that no Arab leader will improve relations with Israel before serious progress is first made with the Palestinians, not because they sincerely care about the Palestinian cause, but because they fear for their political legitimacy and survival. But there are options other than the annexation of the West Bank into Israel, the creation of a binational (that is, non-Jewish) state, and the establishment of side-by-side, separate nations along a modified Green Line.