Early Elections Affect Trump Peace Plan

YERUSHALAYIM -

Early elections in Israel will affect more than just the careers of various politicians—it will affect prospects for peace in the Middle East, and specifically the rollout of the Trump administration’s “deal of the century.”

The White House has decided to further delay its long-awaited peace plan until after the Israeli elections, which are seen as a more opportune time, according to Channel 2 News.

“The upcoming election in Israel on April 9 is one of many factors we are considering in evaluating the timing of the release of the peace plan,” a U.S. official told The Times of Israel on Monday, after it was announced that the polls would be moved up by seven months.

If details of the plan were to be revealed during the campaign, the Israeli elections could be interpreted as a referendum on the U.S. plan. If PM Netanyahu, who has been a close ally of President Donald Trump, would be turned out of office, it could be taken as a public rejection.

On the other hand, if a prime minister to Netanyahu’s political right would be elected, that would likely doom the plan, and U.S. officials reportedly doubt that anyone to his left could succeed in forming a governing coalition.

According to Channel 2, the administration opted to wait so as not to be seen as interfering in Israel’s elections, a concern voiced in internal counsels by U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman. In addition, PM Netanyahu reportedly requested a delay.

In late November, Friedman said that the peace plan will be released when the administration thinks it has “maximized its potential for acceptance, execution and implementation. Our timing, our strategy and our messaging is — and will be — entirely our own.”