Donald Trump has been taking this year’s primary season by storm. His often narcissistic, bigoted comments make headlines in almost every news source. When he speaks, Trump either brags about the “deals” he has made, or slanders Mexican immigrants, Muslims, and reporters with whom he seems to disagree with. Additionally, he offers absurd proposals, ranging from building the controversial “wall”, to placing surveillance cameras in mosques.
While Trump’s comments are immensely concerning, and often upsetting, what scares me the most about a possible “President Trump” is his approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
This Wednesday, Trump sat down with AP reporters, and during the interview, discussed the conflict, and what his vision for the path to peace would look like. He mentioned how negotiating the potential Israeli-Palestinian peace deal would be the most difficult task he has ever faced, and that he is concerned about one of the side’s desire for peace.
The side Mr. Trump is worried about is… Israel.
The same country that has offered the Palestinians a state more than three times? The same country who has given up the Sinai Peninsula, Gaza, and parts of the West Bank for peace? The same country whose Prime Minister has invited Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to discuss peace time and time again? The same country who goes to extreme lengths to limit civilian casualties in times of conflict?
Yes. Mr. Trump is talking about THAT Israel. The Israel that has worked since its beginning to try and make peace with those who seek to destroy it.
You are probably asking yourself, “How can Mr. Trump not be concerned about the side whose government endorses the slaughter of innocent Israelis and Jews?” I am asking that same question too, and simultaneously, the prospect of Trump becoming our next President strikes fear inside.
The day after his interview with AP, Trump spoke at the Republican Jewish Coalition Presidential Candidates Forum. In front of Jewish Republican voters, Mr. Trump proclaimed, “I don’t know that Israel has the commitment to make peace.”
Electing Donald Trump as the Republican nominee, and in 2016, will not only further damage the U.S-Israel relationship, but it will extensively widen the gap between a peaceful solution, and the violence that consumes Israel today.
As Marco Rubio said, “This is not a real estate deal with two sides arguing over money. It’s a struggle to safeguard the future of Israel.”
Donald Trump does not understand this, and his Israel policy is frankly terrifying.