Netanyahu’s big chance

Trump's problem is Israel's problem and Netanyahu should say so.

Jack Engelhard

OpEds Jack Engelhard
Jack Engelhard
צילום: מתוך האתר האישי

For eight years now we’ve been waiting for Israel to get a sympathetic hearing in the White House. That never happened with Obama.

Finally, with President Donald Trump, this is Israel’s big chance and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s big moment when the two meet this week.

Let’s not get this wrong and my guess is that there will be smiles and handshakes all around – but will anything be resolved?

Netanyahu’s job is to close the deal with Trump who is certain to be attentive but Netanyahu must remember the motto of salesmanship – “always be closing.”

Do not assume anything and do not take it for granted that Trump is fully aware of Israel’s position regarding Jerusalem and “the territories.”

Trump, with other things on his mind and other allies to consider, must be reminded that, one, he promised to move the United States Embassy to Jerusalem, and two – the Jewish communities of Judea and Samaria are the heart of the Jewish State. Trump may know this already but Netanyahu’s task is to “keep closing.”

If both leaders stick to the mantra of a “two-state solution” then we’re back to square one.

Who says the Palestinian Arabs want peace? People who knife, shoot and bulldoze innocent civilians are in no shape to share anyone’s country.
Planting a hostile “Palestinian state” into the Jewish heartland is no answer and it has been no answer ever since the 1967 “three Nos at Khartoum,” and it gets downright genocidal when we go back to 1941 and find the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Amin al-Husseini, sitting on Hitler’s lap in order to learn how it’s done.

If Trump knew this but forgot, Netanyahu would do well to remind him.

Also what happened when Israel gave up Gaza and the torrent of Hamas rockets that followed.

Forget for a moment Israel’s loss of land and sovereignty under such a “solution.” But imagine a situation whereby the IDF would need Mahmoud Abbas’ permission to fly over “Palestinian territory?” This needs to be explained to this American President in terms of his own love of sovereignty.

Who says the Palestinian Arabs want peace? People who knife, shoot and bulldoze innocent civilians are in no shape to share anyone’s country.

Trump should be made aware of this.

Let alone the fact that the Palestinian Arabs, who were invented in 1964, have no historical claims to the Holy Land.  

That, too.

So that should be off the table and it’s too bad that Netanyahu keeps bringing it up when instead he should be talking about the problem both countries face – Radical Islam. That is language Trump understands. The United States and Israel – we are both in the same boat on this and it’s up to Neyanyahu to bring that up as Item Number One that needs a solution.

Trump knows Radical Islam and that’s why he insists on “extreme vetting” against possible terrorists entering the United States.

At the same time, however, Trump has expressed some disapproval of 'settlement building'. He has expressed himself politely on this issue because he intends to be a true friend of Israel and friends should be allowed to disagree. But there should be no disagreement if Netanyahu gets it right.

This would be Netanyahu’s reminder to Trump, on Wednesday, that the same type of people who are wrong for America are wrong for Israel --- and to replace Jewish settlements with Palestinian Arab settlements is like extending a formal invitation to ISIS.

That too is language Trump would understand.

In one sitting Benjamin Netanyahu can undo the damage of the past eight years and herald the start of a beautiful friendship.

If he’s as good a salesman as he is a politician.

New York-based bestselling American novelist Jack Engelhard writes a regular column for Arutz Sheva. New from the novelist: “News Anchor Sweetheart,” a novelist’s version of Fox News and Megyn Kelly. Engelhard is the author of the international bestseller “Indecent Proposal.” For books like his award-winning memoir “Escape from Mount Moriah,” he is the recipient of the Ben Hecht Award for Literary Excellence. Website: