President Trump should consider championing legal, voluntary and financially-assisted emigration from Gaza and the West Bank by calling on Jordan and Egypt to open their border crossings and grant residency status to Gazan and West Bank Arabs seeking a better future for themselves and their families.
Such action is certainly justified following the rejection of President Trump's offer to inject US$6.5 billion into the West Bank and Gaza - with both Hamas and the PLO telling Trump they were not prepared to accept any financial assistance coming out of the Manama Conference jointly convened last week by Trump and Bahrein.
Hamas purported to speak for the "Palestinian people" - a body politic invented in 1964 that last had a say in its own future in 2006:
No one can represent the Palestinian people except the Palestinians themselves, who have never been unqualified to taking decisions related to Palestine. The parties and states meeting in Manama do not have any right or mandate to take decisions on behalf of the Palestinian people. Therefore, any resolution taken or stance adopted at the conference is null and void and does not represent the Palestinian people. Such decisions or positions are only desperate attempts to liquidate the Palestinian issue and do not represent the Palestinian people.
The PLO was just as quick to reject the massive financial aid being offered by Trump, PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas declaring:
We say that national rights are not pieces of real estate that are purchased and sold and that arriving at a political solution that guarantees freedom, dignity, independence and justice for our people must precede any economic programs or projects because that will create stability and security for everyone...
Christine Lagarde - managing director of the International Monetary Fund – appeared to agree with both Hamas and the PLO – when stressing:
Improving economic conditions and attracting lasting investment to the region depends ultimately on being able to reach a peace agreement.
Peace, political stability and re-establishment of trust between all the parties involved are essential pre-requisites to the success of any economic plan for the region.
Lagarde's comments appeared at odds with the views expressed by White House adviser Jared Kushner when he opened the conference and said an economic plan:
...is a necessary precondition to resolving what has been a previously unsolvable political situation.
The "unsolvable political situation" in Gaza and the West Bank has been ongoing for the last 100 years.
Gaza and West Bank Arabs - currently forced to endure this political uncertainty - faced the following dire economic circumstances in 2018 according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics:
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