Dr.Salim M.Al Zanoon
Trump’s declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is a departure from the United States’ 70-year-old policy. This declaration will prompt the re-formation of three different tracks, the official Palestinian level, the popular level, the Palestinian factions and global jihad organizations.
Track 1: The official Palestinian level.
Politically, the announcement places President Abbas in a more difficult position, especially since his political situation is already difficult. He runs a reconciliation process with his rivals Hamas, faces a loss of credibility and suspect in his leadership, and in Washington’s role as an honest actor in the political process. According to this, the Palestinian Authority will take steps to appease the Palestinian street, and to avoid an attack by the opposition against it. In this context, the Palestinian Authority will work in three directions:
The political process, adopt during the next phase a more aggressive stance towards the peace process, no Palestinian leader can accept the American decision, without any consideration, Abas has indicated “Abbas” that this action undermines the peace process, and a US withdrawal from the exercise of the role played during the past decades in the care of the peace process.
Diplomatic activity, intensive work to renew its attempts to join as a full member of the United Nations, seek recognition of a Palestinian state from other Western countries, renew the steps in the International Criminal Court against war crimes committed by Israel, and push for the promotion of BDS efforts to disclose the practices of the Israeli occupation, the cessation of forms of normalization with it, and the international boycott of Israel.
Palestinian reconciliation, to adopt a more flexible attitude toward dealing with Hamas on the stalled issues, where Abbas’s position has been tough on disarming the movement, refusing to integrate its employees in the institutions and paying their salaries, which will be dealt with more positively in the next phase.
Second: At the grassroots level and the Palestinian factions.
The American recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel will prompt the Palestinians to move in three directions:
The Palestinian factions, the Palestinian left and the Hamas movement will work to heat up the streets and turn their celebrations into a series of days of anger.
In the same context, the Hamas military leadership at home and abroad will exert its efforts to carry out military attacks. The violent confrontation will make the people of Gaza forget the failure of the reconciliation process with Fatah, and the outbreak of violence will improve its image in Gaza as a movement turned into political track and approached to Egypt and Saudi Arabia and chose a moderate policy towards Israel. It renounced the armed struggle. In anticipation of this, the Israeli army ordered troops in charge of Gaza cover to remain close to the protected areas and intensified its security activity in the occupied territories.
The Islamic Jihad movement will consider the announcement as an excuse to carry out its threats to respond to the bombing of the tunnel, and the killing of its members, especially with the erosion of the restraining factors to respond, such as the pressure on Hamas to refrain from responding.
Individual operations during the recent wave of violence, the phenomenon of the spread of improvised individual operations. Many incidents such as sting and the use of improvised weapons were carried out individually and in an unorganized way , and the pace of individual actions is likely to increase.
Religious conflict, religious leaders in Jerusalem will lead the popular protests, because the political crisis has already taken place in a religious way, as happened against the electronic gates, as the religious leadership enjoys a high credibility and affect the street more than political leadership, this option will be supported by the authority, So that it works on the instrument of violent incident subject to control and does not reach chaos.
Third: On the level of global jihad organizations.
The declaration will be a fertile ground for the extremist organizations for mobilization and recruiting as long as the organizations associated with the ideas and visions of al-Qaeda have employed the Palestinian cause as a pretext for working and carrying out terrorist attacks at the local and international levels, targeting Western and Israeli interests.
In the same context, the organization ISIS, the Sinai Wilayah, will work in light of its defeat in Syria and Iraq, and the decline of its economic and spatial influence, to use the declaration as a tool for mobilization to attack Israel from the Sinai and try to carry out operations against Israeli tourists in the Sinai.
Rawabet Center for Research and Strategic Studies