MembersWhat Will Be the Cost of Trump’s Jerusalem Declaration?

When US President Donald Trump publicly and officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the international community howled over what it called a reckless decision that would be paid for in blood.

By Ryan Jones |
Photo: Nati Shohat/Flash90

But this turned out to be largely false. The region has much bigger problems with which to deal.

Of much greater concern to Israelis was whether or not Washington would later leverage Trump’s gesture to extract further concessions in the peace process. Trump sees himself as the ultimate deal-maker, and this is just the type of bargaining chip one might need to close an impossible deal.

As the new year dawned, Trump took to Twitter, as is his wont, to decry enormous US financial aid to ungrateful recipients in Pakistan and the Palestinian Authority. But buried in the middle of his digital diatribe was a line that raised the eyebrows of many Israelis.

“We have taken Jerusalem, the toughest part of the negotiation, off the table, but Israel, for that, would have had to pay more,” wrote the president.

Fortunately for Israel, Trump recognizes that the Palestinian Authority is anything but a genuine peace partner (as evidenced by the remainder of his tweet), and that Israel should give them nothing under current circumstances. Still, could this come back to...

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