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Only the Palestinians Can Accept Kushner’s Peace Plan

Al-Arabiya, Saudi Arabia, August 4

Throughout history, the Palestinian people have been victims of careless leaders who stood on the wrong side of history. When the Allies waged a fierce war against Nazi Germany, Palestinian leader Hajj Amin al-Husseini chose to side with Adolf Hitler. Zionist soldiers, meanwhile, fought within the ranks of the British and American armies. So, when the war was over and Hitler was defeated, the Allies supported the establishment of a Jewish state in Palestine. Similarly, when the Suez crisis broke out in 1956, U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower protected Egypt’s interests against Israeli aggression. Thankfully, Gamal Abd al-Nasser’s regime was saved. But the Egyptian president later turned his back to Eisenhower and sided with Moscow. The Israelis, meanwhile, began laying the foundation for their so-called “special relationship” with the United States. In other words, the fate of the Palestinian cause has often been determined by actors who claimed to represent the Palestinians, but, in reality, sought completely different interests. This has been challenging to witness. Countries like Saudi Arabia that have been tremendously supportive of the Palestinian cause, were forced to refrain from imposing their will on the Palestinian people. They offered whatever support they could without dictating to the Palestinian leadership how it should act. Riyadh stood by the Palestinian people when they waged war against Israel, as well as when they called for peace. It provided funding and political support for successive Palestinian presidents. This policy hasn’t changed since. Saudi Arabia will not command the Palestinian people to accept a peace plan that they refuse to accept. This decision will be left solely to the Palestinian leadership. –Fares bin Hazem