Witnessing Donald Trump’s election victory last week reminded me of the days 16 years ago, when the world first learned of then President Bush’s election victory. Back then, many pundits believed that Bush’s presidency would mark a change away from the failed politics of president Bill Clinton and a peace process that was strong on process and weak on peace. Palestinian leaders oddly “welcomed” Bush’s election, likely thinking that Bush would walk in the footsteps of his father George H.W. Bush and likely put the brakes on Israel’s continued colony expansion and that we would no longer be saddled by the pro-Israel White House cadre aptly labelled “Israel’s lawyers.”
And now, with a Trump presidency we see much of the same: a Palestinian leader “welcoming” a Trump presidency and pundits telling us that Trump may not be as bad for Palestinians as we know to be true.