For her new book Kushner Inc., journalist Vicky Ward interviewed some 220 people to better understand the roles of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump within the tumultuous White House. Ward found that the power couple is quite power hungry, demanding to travel free on the State Department’s dime and skirting around the “no’s” of former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Published on Tuesday, Kushner Inc. also contains alleged details of the president’s son-in-law’s labyrinthine plan to permanently end conflict in the Middle East. According to a copy of the book seen by the Jerusalem Post, Kushner wanted:
… the Saudis and Emiratis to provide economic assistance to the Palestinians. There were plans for an oil pipeline from Saudi Arabia to Gaza, where refineries and a shipping terminal could be built. The profits would create desalination plants, where Palestinians could find work, addressing the high unemployment rate.
According to Ward, who spoke with “multiple people who saw drafts of the plan,” Kushner proposed a geopolitical version of the multi-destination NBA player swap, in which Jordan would give territory to the Palestinian authority, and “in return, Jordan would get land from Saudi Arabia, and that country would get back two Red Sea islands it gave Egypt to administer in 1950.”
So, the alleged plan would involve no less than five countries (plus Palestine) coordinating to give aid or renegotiate boundaries in the most politically convoluted region on the planet. Note that the proposal, as detailed, does not require the Netanyahu government — a close ally of Kushner’s — to make any significant concessions. Not to mention, desalination plants aren’t exactly efficient, producing 1.5 times more unusable brine than potable water.
In Kushner Inc., Ward also reports on the president’s son-in-law’s foreign policy coup. “Kushner took the Middle East from Tillerson’s portfolio,” Ward wrote. “‘I want Israel,’ is how he put it, according to a former Tillerson aide … Tillerson, a former Boy Scout, tried to work with Kushner because he thought it was the right thing to do.”
The White House envoy to the Middle East, Jason Greenblatt, has denied the book’s details of the Middle East plan. Whether or not the final product looks like the draft described to Vicky Ward, Kushner’s peace proposal is expected sometime after Israel’s election scheduled on April 9. Last month, Trump’s senior advisor described his plan — in a typically vague statement — as “really about establishing borders and resolving final-status issues … The plan will have a broad economic impact, not only on Israel and the Palestinians, but on the entire region as well.”