There are a plethora of issues currently overbearing the Middle East. Those include the Syrian conflict, Iranian nuclear deal, Israeli settlements in the West Banks, etc.
The meeting is crucial to repairing the relationship between the United States and Israel as the Obama administration had stopped Israeli settlement construction, creating weary relations.
“Politically, it’s extremely important for both Netanyahu and Trump to signal the fact that this represents a significant departure from the dysfunction of the U.S.-Israel relationship, at least as it’s perceived, over the course of the last eight years,” said Aaron David Miller, vice president for new initiatives at the Woodrow Wilson Center, who advised both Republican and Democratic secretaries of state on the Arab-Israeli peace process.
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu will expect negotiations on the terms of dissuading Iranians regional behavior, according to Dennis Ross, who worked on the Middle East peace process under Presidents Obama, Clinton and George H.W. Bush.
“That is a profound concern to the Israelis because, by year 15, Iran will be a nuclear threshold state, in a position where it could move very quickly to turn that threshold status into a weapons status,” Ross said. “I think that what the prime minister would like to see, and at least probe the possibility of, is seeing whether the administration is willing with the other members of the P5+1 to revisit at least the timetables that are built into this agreement.”
Discussion in the meeting will touch on Netanyahu’s government planning to expand with more than 5,000 new homes and a plan to construct an entirely new settlement, reported by CBS News.
Officially, though, the administration “has not taken an official position on settlement activity,” says press secretary Sean Spicer.
On the other hand, Palestinians fear Trump will neglect support for an independent Palestinian state.
A senior White House official said Tuesday that peace between Israeli and Palestinians did not necessarily have to mean Palestinian statehood, adding that Trump may not “dictate” a solution, according to Reuters. The United States has long supported the idea of creating a Palestine alongside Israel.
Trump supports the goal of peace between Israel and the Palestinians, even if it does not involve the two-state solution, a senior White House official said on Tuesday.