Trump's Middle East triumph

Consider the key concession Israel has made here: It has agreed to suspend its plan to summarily annex a significant fraction of the West Bank. If you look at the U.S.-sponsored peace plan from earlier this year, you will see that, in the case of a two-state solution, Israel would still maintain control of the border between the West Bank and Jordan. In other words, Palestinians in the West Bank would be surrounded by Israeli security forces, as they almost entirely are in Gaza.

The reason this is necessary is that, by turning Gaza into a platform for missile terrorism after the Israeli withdrawal in 2005, the Palestinians have proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank would be suicide — unless it can control all of the West Bank’s borders. If you look carefully at the annexation plans that have been floated, they would leave Israel in permanent possession of virtually all of the West Bank’s frontiers with Jordan. Any crossings — the West Bank’s outlet to the world – would be under Israeli control.

There is another scenario, however. There is a possible future — though it may seem impossible to us today — in which Arabs stop hating Jews and lose interest in destroying Israel. In that future, Israel would have no more to fear from a free border between the West Bank and Jordan, or between Gaza and Egypt, then Sweden has to fear from its border with Finland. In that future, Palestinian Arabs live free and prosperous in and out of Israel. In that future, Iran has become democratic, or the threat from the mullahs has been diminished to the point where they can no longer support terror groups on Israel’s borders. In that future, Hamas and Hezbollah are isolated and wither.