Rashid Khalidi is the Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University, a former adviser to Palestinian negotiators, and the author of the forthcoming The Hundred Years’ War on the Palestinians: Settler-Colonialism and Resistance, 1917–2017. (June 2019)
What Jared Kushner and his colleagues are saying is that the Palestinians have no justified grievances, and no legitimate rights, except the right to whatever prosperity can be achieved with Gulf money under a permanent Israeli military occupation of their land. However, the Kushner plan’s notion of throwing other people’s money at the issue will not make it go away; not when it involves the national, political, civil, and human rights of an estimated 12 million people. The Palestinian people are not about to be bought off. Whether Kushner knows it or not, the days of Lord Curzon and Lord Balfour are long gone, the colonial era is over. With the neocolonial plans they have concocted for the Palestinians, he and his Israeli allies are swimming against the tide of history.