The White House senior adviser Jared Kushner is set to present an ambitious Middle East Peace plan at an international conference next week in Bahrain.
President Trump's son-in-law and his team have been working on the document for the past two years, Kushner told Reuters. Going further, he explained that the $50 billion plan aims to create a global investment fund to boost the Palestinian and Arab state economies in the region.
It would also include a $5 billion transportation corridor connecting the West Bank and Gaza.
A significant portion of the $50 billion would go to the unprivileged Palestinian territories over the next decade. Washington would split the rest of the amount between the neighboring Jordan, Lebanon, and Egypt.
Kushner pointed out that some of the projects would take place in the Egyptian Sinai peninsula which would benefit the Palestinians residing in the nearby impoverished Gaza strip. Despite the long-term military tensions in the area, Kushner is also planning to invest in tourism in Palestine.
During the upcoming conference in Bahrain, taking place June 25-26 in the capital city Manama, Kushner would look for international support of his plan. He hopes to attract private and institutional investors with interests in the region, to cover part of the bill.
The economic recovery blueprint is a part of a detailed peace plan between Israel and Palestine. The Palestinian Authority would not join the event in Manama as the enclave have officially refused to speak to Washington after President Trump recognized Jerusalem as the Israeli capital back in 2017.
In Kushner's words, some Palestinian businessmen would still be in attendance, but he refused to share their names in advance. The Israeli government would also not come to Manama. Tel Aviv would send a small group of local business delegation instead.
Even though his plan did not find many supporters among the politicians of the Arab countries so far, Kushner is convinced that it could be ''The Opportunity of the Century'' if the countries in the region embrace it.
Palestinian Finance Minister Shukri Bishara was among the first politicians not to share Kushner's enthusiasm. In an interview with Reuters, he commented that Palestine did not need a Bahrain meeting to build an independent country. He emphasized that the only thing Palestine needed was peace. In Bishara's view, economic revival followed by peace was unrealistic.
As the economic blueprint did not offer a political solution of the year-long conflict in the region, it is widely rejected not only by Palestine but also by the neighboring countries with which Israel aims to build some healthy relationships.
Political analysts from the region often described Kushner's plan as ''a colossal waste of time'' and ''dead on arrival.''
What do you think? Do you believe that Kushner's blueprint would succeed?