Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Trump Bibi Meet

By Micah Halpern
I've Been Thinking:

Today's White House meeting between President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be, at the same time, both very exciting and very boring.

Exciting because it has been a very long time since an Israeli prime minister - especially Netanyahu, has been a welcome and well received guest at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Boring because there will be no new news to come out of the meeting -no news, no conflict, no new ground. In the end, that 'no news' will turn into "good news" for everyone.

The first meeting between a new US president and a sitting Israeli prime minister is normally a formality. The two leaders review basics and reaffirm the promise made by Bush and Sharon to protect Israel. They get to know one another and make certain that they can pick up a phone and clear things up if and when it becomes necessary.

In this case, Trump and Netanyahu are already friends. They will skip the formalities and get down to brass tacks business, or, as some will call it "tachlis." They will probably speak about Iran, ISIS, Syria, Turkey and the cabal of negativism that swarms around each of them.

They will only briefly discuss Palestinian issues - and only to reaffirm the Two-State Solution and agree that there is at present no Palestinian leader strong enough to broker the compromises necessary for negotiations and meaningful dialogue. They will mention settlements and President Trump will reiterate that it is not helpful to make public pronouncements about such things.

And finally, they will agree that it is a good idea to move the US embassy to
Jerusalem, but more time is needed before the move can and should be made.

Not bad for Israel. And not bad for the United States.

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