Well, 2020 hasn't been going in humanity's favor. Coronavirus outbreak, Australia fires, the death of a basketball legend ... all these tragic incidents and January hasn't even ended. And the cherry on top of that very bitter cake is U.S. President Donald Trump's Middle East peace plan, more precisely, an Israel-Palestine peace plan.
On Tuesday, Trump presented his long-awaited plan and vowed to keep Jerusalem as Israel's capital in a press conference at the White House alongside Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He proposed a two-state solution, called Israel a "thriving center of democracy, innovation, culture, and e-commerce" and said "Palestinians deserve a better life." His proposed solution - or what he calls his vision for peace - does not provide displaced Palestinians a "right of return" nor does the plan allow for the sovereign state of Palestine to form a military.
"The deal of the century is the opportunity of a century, and we're not going to pass it by," Netanyahu said. It seems both Trump and Netanyahu think they are offering the "deal of the century" but are completely disregarding what Palestinians are losing in all of this. Hence, the hashtag #PeaceSham.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas rejected the proposed peace plan, calling it "the slap of the century." Trump insists it is a "win-win" opportunity for both Israel and Palestine.
The current American administration aims to resolve the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The proposal is led by Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, a man who helped fund illegal Israeli settlements. So much for neutrality, right?
The proposal endorses Israel's continued illegal settlements in Palestinian territory. The settlements, a strong point of contention between Israelis and Palestinians, are considered illegal under international law. The United Nations (UN) and many countries around the world continually condemn the expansion of settlements, which demolish homes and steal lands from Palestinians.
Towards the end of 2019, the U.S. stopped acknowledging the settlements' illegality. In the proposed #PeaceSham, the illegal settlements are called "enclave communities."
And let's not get started on the fact that the plan gives Israel the entirety of Jerusalem as its capital. A future Palestinian state would only get a few blocks in eastern Jerusalem.
For years, the fate of the ancient city has been in a constant state of tug-of-war. The western part of Jerusalem was captured by Israel during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war; following the 1967 Six-Day-War, East Jerusalem was annexed by Israel, removing the fence that split the ancient city into two. The international community has not recognized East Jerusalem as part of Israel since. Rather, it is treated as occupied territory.
Trump's plan also amends the borders, giving Israel more land in the Palestinian-controlled West Bank. And so on and so forth.
Several Palestinians have been sharing the "real map" of Palestine, reminding Trump and the international community that their land should be returned to them, not split up like it's a pie up for grabs.
The offline community has been protesting the proposed #PeaceSham even before it was officially released. Thousands took to the streets on Tuesday in the Gaza Strip just hours before Trump went public with his plan.
The protesters burned pictures of Trump and held banners that read:
"The fall of the 'Deal of the Century.'"
The online community joined the conversation after Trump's proposal went live. People are outraged and that's an understatement.
Palestinians, Americans, and basically anyone who believes in human rights and humanity argued against the proposed peace plan.
Here's what people are saying: