Opinion |

Trump Can Save Amona

'All the bad spirits that began to spread as a result of Trump’s candidacy are trivial. Israel’s main problem, according to right-wing reports, is the settlements and the need to put an end to the Obama initiative.'

Uzi Baram
Uzi Baram
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Amona, an unauthorized outpost in the West Bank, east of the Palestinian town of Ramallah, May 18, 2016.
Amona, an unauthorized outpost in the West Bank, east of the Palestinian town of Ramallah, May 18, 2016.Credit: Oded Balilty, AP
Uzi Baram
Uzi Baram

Anyone who reads and listens to the media representing the right - and chief among them the royal mouthpiece, “Israel Hayom” - cannot have missed out on the prominent expressions of support for Donald Trump.

This support has three main features: First, Trump is a conservative who represents a movement that is sick of liberal values, which have been on the defensive in the United States in recent years; second, the claim that the Western world needs strong leadership, which will return the United States to its days of greatness, and which has been taken from it because of a feeble government; while the third point is the most interesting:

Ignoring Trump’s grotesque personality, the racist sentiments arising from his candidacy, and the fact that anti-Semitic organizations have joined his campaign - while threatening Jewish journalists and media figures, alongside hints that characterize the Democratic Party as the home of the Jews and the Republicans as the home of the Americans.

All this is known to the editors of the kingdom’s mouthpiece and the journalists of Arutz 7, but it seems rather unimportant to them. The main thing in their eyes is the hope that Trump will ignore the spread of the settlements and maybe even help save Amona.

After all Amona is not just another problem. It has become the test case for the viewpoint that Jews are allowed to settle everywhere, and it is also the answer to everyone who dares to think about the evacuation of Jews from territories occupied in 1967.

In other words, all the bad spirits that began to spread as a result of Trump’s candidacy are trivial. Israel’s main problem, according to right-wing reports, is the settlements and the need to put an end to the Obama initiative to define them as a violation of international law.

The Obama initiative endangers, according to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the entire settlement enterprise. Who did he say that to? The martyrs of Amona.

The secret hope of the leaders of the right in Israel is that if Trump is elected president he will save Amona, and maybe even other Amonas sitting on land that does not belong to them.

Obama and Hillary Clinton can be liberal, support Israel and help it economically. They can stand firmly against the winds of anti-Semitism and racism blowing in the United States for many years, as seen in Elia Kazan’s film “Gentlemen’s Agreement,” from 1947.

But they have failed the Bennett-Elkin test because they want to leave options open for a solution to the conflict, which is not consistent with right-wing aspiration to annex more and more territory.

So Trump’s strange and dubious personality is not a part of the calculations made by the leaders of the right. They want a sympathetic president, who will understand that the right has no solution for the long term, but only short-term solutions, and in the short term the most important thing is to preserve Amona, which could very well turn out to be an obstacle to any agreement.

Israel changed its tone years ago. No longer a “light unto the nations” or “there are judges in Jerusalem.” The new rulers, lacking any universal values, have turned the gutter language of politics into high society.

As a result, they are not even trying to explain why they are acting against the establishment of the new public broadcasting corporation, which the government decided upon under the law.

After all, everyone knows that the intention is to prevent the establishment of a new media channel that they may not be able to control. This is how the deals to destroy the electronic and print media are built.

All these are important to Netanyahu and his right hand man MK David Bitan. But more than anything else the survival of Amona is important to them, because its evacuation will set a precedent, and for that they need a president like Donald Trump. He is meant to carry out the most important mission: Saving Amona.

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