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I couldn’t believe my ears — yes, my ears. I learned about this by phone from my Torah study partner in Israel. I had to search to find out more. Thanks to Ben Shapiro, I finally believe it. He quotes an article in the Atlantic where Prince Mohammed bin Salman says:
I believe that each people, anywhere, has a right to live in their peaceful nation. I believe the Palestinians and the Israelis have the right to have their own land…. we have religious concerns about the fate of the holy mosque in Jerusalem and about the rights of the Palestinian people. This is what we have. We don’t have any objection against any other people.
I know that the Saudis and Israelis have been working together in a number of areas, including the sharing of intelligence. In a meeting with Mahmoud Abbas, head of the Palestinian Authority, Salman proposed a peace plan that…
…would give Palestinians a state ‘but only noncontiguous parts of the West Bank and only limited sovereignty over their own territory. The vast majority of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, which most of the world considers illegal, would remain. The Palestinians would not be given East Jerusalem as their capital and there would be no right of return for Palestinian refugees and their descendants . . .’
It’s reported that this shift may be due to the work of Jared Kushner, Trump’s special advisor and son-in-law, working around the State Department.
I feel quite certain that Prince Mohammed’s peace proposal fell on deaf ears with the Palestinians. And I’m not convinced that a two-state solution is the remedy for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. But the Prince’s acknowledging Israel’s right to exist in his role as one of the leaders of the Arab world is a deeply meaningful statement not only to Israel but to the entire world.