December 23, 2018
Dr. Joseph Frager
The President has created one of the greatest legacies of friendship and brotherhood with Israel of anyone who has sat in the White House.
His move of the Embassy to its rightful eternal home in Jerusalem after so many others failed and his tearing up of the Iran Deal despite his soon to be leaving Secretary of Defense James Mattis' objection to doing so puts him in the Foreign Policy Hall of Fame. He now wants to make Peace in Israel. It is a noble and worthy goal. If anyone can pull it off it will be President Donald J. Trump.
Having said that I would like to respectfully interject some of my thoughts. For starters it is very difficult to make peace in Israel when war is raging in other areas of the Middle East. Getting rid of ISIS is a major accomplishment and a fulfillment of a campaign promise. The President does not get enough credit for this.
Despite James Mattis' criticism the President has more importantly re-established America's credibility as a dependable force for good in the most dangerous neighborhood in the world. He also does not get enough credit for having done so. He has realistically re-aligned some very tough and outright rogue countries into a more controllable situation. Under Obama these very same countries were at their worst behavior. Under President Trump they are at their best behavior.
This is why Peace actually can be achieved. However, rather than focusing on Peace between Mahmoud Abbas and Israel, the President should focus on establishing a Kurdish State, getting Iran out of Syria, Hezbollah out of Lebanon and Hamas out of Gaza. The focus should not be on creating a PLO State but on establishing once and for all a Kurdish State. The Kurds deserve a State a lot more than the PLO. Finally carving out a Kurdish State would be a crowning achievement good for America, good for Israel and the rest of the Middle East.
This is actually more realistic now that ISIS has been defeated. Although at first blush pulling out American Troops from Syria would seem to diminish the likelihood of a Kurdish State that might not be the case. Although Erdogan of Turkey has been a bad actor in the Middle East for a long time, the President actually has gotten him to behave. This is precisely why the President felt he could give our troops in Syria a "break" before the Holiday season.
Of course Erdogan can revert to his old ways and defy the President. I do not think Erdogan will risk doing that. I also think that if the President tells Erdogan that he wants to create a Kurdish State, Erdogan will give in just as he promised the President he would not attack the Kurds after the American troop withdrawal.
It will be a lot harder dealing with Syria and Iran. The pieces are slowly coming together. I fully expect the Secretary of State, the New Secretary of Defense and the National Security Advisor to be very busy in 2019. Overall, I am optimistic that a Kurdish State will be part of their workload.