Pompeo Reverses Comments That Peace Plan Is Biased Toward Israel

Trump shares Pompeo's previous pessimism about the plan

Facing some pessimism on the Israel peace process since his own comments were published Sunday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is feverishly walking back what he said, to the point where he is attacking others who echoed his own comments.

That the US peace plan is going to be deliberately biased in favor of Israel is no secret, and has been one of the few things known about it since the White House confirmed this in early February, saying the US plan would be “proudly” in favor of Israel.

Last week, Pompeo spoke to the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, telling them he didn’t have a lot of hope for the plan being accepted. When he called it “a deal that only the Israelis could love,” it wasn’t seen as a ground-breaking addition, more of an aside to his pessimism.

Yet Pompeo apparently saw what he said as problematic, again despite it being exactly what the White House said months ago, and what has been treated as obvious fact for months. Now, he says the only people who believe the plan are bias don’t know “the true facts of what is contained in the plan.”

Which is half of a reasonable point, as we don’t know what the plan is. On the other hand, those whose plan it actually is have all said it is biased toward Israel, and even Pompeo himself was quoted in a major newspaper saying it just a day ago. So suggesting that assessment is totally uninformed isn’t so reasonable after all. Indeed, the US Ambassador to Israel just recently defended the known bias publicly on the grounds that the administration believes God is on Israel’s side.

Indeed, the truly relevatory part of Pompeo’s comments was the pessimism therein, which suggested realism that had previously not been part of the administration’s talking points. President Trump seemed comfortable with this, however, conceding that Pompeo “may be right” in his assessment that the deal might be rejected.

Which isn’t to say that the one point was even distinct from the other. In fact, the main reason the Palestinians are being dismissive of the plan before they’ve seen it is because the administration has been so open with the bias therein, and are expecting a plan that is virtually deliberately in contradiction to their own interests.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.