There is *full* Gulf buy-in for the so-called "Deal of the Century", and it emanates not from Saudi-occupied Bahrain but from the Saudi Arabian royal court itself. The "Deal of the Century" should be called the Kushner-MBS Peace Plan.
Mark my words: This is not a peace plan that is based upon some lofty human values - it's not a deal based upon justice, dignity, legitimacy, or human rights. It's a deal that is based upon the dehumanization and further crushing of the Palestinians.
And here's something journalists should be aware of: The gutting of the Saudi public sphere had a clear direction towards this deal. Many (if not most) of the Saudi intellectuals arrested between 2017 and last month were active voices in the pro-Palestine movement.
MBS and Qahtani targeted the very Saudi intellectuals who would be able to push back against full normalization of a terrible bargain with Netanyahu. Then they flooded the Saudi public sphere with crass dehumanization of Palestinians, as a means to engineer public opinion.
MBS knows that Trump won't be in office forever and can't cover up for him forever. He knows that he needs to hedge his bets on a post-Trump America. For this, he needs a more public alliance with Israel. So he needs to rush through this bargain sooner rather than later.
If in a post-Trump world, MBS's Saudi Arabia is going to become a diplomatically isolated state, it needs an out. Pardon the not-so-accurate metaphor, but this is like a North Korea looking for a China. Netanyahu can play the role of the China.
In the violence that will follow the deal (and there will be violence, make no mistake), the Palestinians will be branded as irrational, intransigent, self-defeating, and incapable of self-rule. It is imperative for the Palestinians to get their shit together ahead of this.
"We're going to gut your entire national project now and forever, but you can get really nice jobs way over there." They will expect us to trade our dignity and our national aspirations in return for economic development. Having failed to break us, they'll try to buy us.
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