By Ramona Wadi
The dangerous farce of finding a purported solution for Palestine continues. To detract from issues such as the ongoing forced displacement of Palestinians and the Palestinian right of return, a new twist has been added to the Bahrain summit – pitting Palestinian business leaders against the Palestinian people, who have been rendered politically invisible.
In an interview with the New York Times, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman justified the summit by mentioning the aspirations of Palestinian business people.
“There is almost no Palestinian business leader that wants to refrain from meeting with some of the largest sovereign wealth funds in the world when the topic of the discussion is limited to giving money to the Palestinians,” he declared.
That Palestinian business leaders would wish to attend the summit should not elicit surprise, or provide justification for disapproving the boycotts against Israeli-US incentives. That said, it has also been reported that, contrary to Friedman’s claims, Palestinian business organizations refused the US invitation due to the absence of a political solution. Economic peace, they said, has not been successful “precisely because freedom and sovereignty for Palestinians was lacking.”
The aim of the conference is to unite investors against Palestinians. If Palestinians participate, the summit would achieve a milestone in consolidating the divide between social classes in Palestinian society.
Moreover, it would boost the US plans to completely eliminate Palestinian political demands by promoting and requesting adherence to a business model that will provide economic incentives for a select group of investors while forcing the rest of the Palestinian population into circumstances necessitating even more humanitarian aid.
The outcome would be the US and the international community finding a viable model of cooperation to exploit Palestinians. All the rhetoric of opposing US President Donald Trump’s plan would no longer take precedence.
Instead, the international community would have an easier time to market Palestine and Palestinians as a perpetual humanitarian project. And evoking the deal of the century or the two-state compromise will no longer be considered a contentious issue within diplomatic circles.
Trump’s plan illustrated the perpetual actions of scheming against Palestinian demands. The international community’s refusal to go back in decades, before humanitarian aid and Israel came into existence with disastrous consequences for Palestinians, are among the main reasons why a solution has not yet been found. Human rights are not profitable for the international community, but violations are.
These violations include depriving Palestinians of their legitimate right to return to all of their land – something which the US, the UN and the PA are in agreement about. Indeed the success of Trump’s plan, irrespective of whether it is implemented, lies in the fact that it is uniting the world against Palestinian demands, obliterating Palestinian history and isolating the Palestinian people against the growing trend of investment for the elite across the political spectrum.
– Ramona Wadi is a staff writer for Middle East Monitor, where this article was originally published. She contributed this article to the Palestine Chronicle.