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Netanyahu hopes to ‘make history’ at talks on Trump peace plan

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu voiced hope Sunday that he can “make history” in Washington this week during talks on US President Donald Trump’s peace plan for the Middle East.

Netanyahu has been invited to meet Trump at the White House on Monday and Tuesday to discuss the project, which has already been dismissed by the Palestinians.

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“We are in the midst of very dramatic diplomatic developments, but the climax is still ahead of us,” Netanyahu told reporters ahead of a weekly cabinet meeting.

“In a short while, I’ll leave for Washington to meet my friend, the President of the United States Donald Trump, who will present his deal of the century… I’m full of hope that we can make history,” he added.

Trump on Thursday said he will release his long-delayed plan before meeting Netanyahu in Washington.

“It’s a great plan. It’s a plan that really would work,” Trump said.

Netanyahu’s political rival Benny Gantz has also been invited to the White House to meet with Trump on Monday.

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Gantz told a news conference in Tel Aviv on Saturday that the “peace plan devised by President Trump will go down in history as a meaningful landmark”.

He expected the initiative to allow “different players in the Middle East to finally move ahead towards an historic regional agreement”.

The Palestinian leadership was not invited and has already rejected Trump’s plan amid tense relations with the US president over his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s undivided capital.

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“This step only reaffirms our absolute rejection of what the US administration has done so far, particularly the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital,” Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas’s spokesman said in a statement.

The Palestinians see east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state and believe Trump’s plan buries the two-state solution that has been for decades the cornerstone of international Middle East diplomacy.

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World powers have long agreed that Jerusalem’s fate should be settled through negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

– Israel’s ‘greatest friend’ –

Israel has occupied east Jerusalem and the West Bank since the 1967 Six-Day War.

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More than 600,000 Israelis now live there in settlements considered illegal under international law.

Trump’s peace initiative has been in the works since 2017.

The economic component of the initiative was unveiled in June and calls for $50 billion in international investment in the Palestinian territories and neighbouring Arab countries over 10 years.

Trump came to power in 2017 promising to broker Israeli-Palestinian peace, which he labelled the “ultimate deal”.

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The US president has repeatedly boasted that he is the most pro-Israeli US president in history.

Netanyahu in a statement Saturday called Trump “the greatest friend that Israel has ever had”.

Gantz also showered Trump with praise during his news conference.

“I wish to thank President Trump for his dedication and determination in defending the security interests that both Israel and the US share,” Gantz said.

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Trump’s separate meetings with Netanyahu and Gantz come a little more than a month before new Israeli elections, with polls showing Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud and Gantz’s centrist Blue and White party running neck-and-neck.

Israeli media speculated that Trump had chosen to unveil his plan in support of Netanyahu’s election bid — the third in a year.


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Things are so bad for Republicans the GOP had to send money to Texas

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In 2016, then-anti-Trump Republican Sen. Linsey Graham proclaimed, "If we nominate Trump, we will get destroyed.......and we will deserve it." It seems his prediction is coming closer to fruition.

Financial reporting reveals that the Republican Party was forced to send $1.3 million to ruby-red Texas as the election nears.

It was something spotted by ProPublica developer and ex-reporter Derek Willis Sunday.

"That's never happened before," he tweeted.

He noted that the Texas GOP raised $3.3 million in August, but nearly half of that came from their national parents.

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What the London ‘Blitz’ reveals about how much pain and tragedy people can handle in 2020

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It's hard to imagine how 2020 could possibly get worse. "If we lose Betty White," a friend said on a drive to the Supreme Court to lay flowers.

So many Americans have lost friends or family members to COVID-19. Thousands of Americans survived the virus only to desperately needed organ transplants and forever will struggle to breathe the way they once did. Others are still suffering without smell or taste even three months after having the virus. Millions of Americans are out of work. Debt is stacking up for those trying to survive in the COVID economy. A lack of health insurance can mean hospitalizations from the virus are putting people into bankruptcy.

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Stop trying to convince people you’re right — it will never persuade anyone: expert

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MSNBC host Joshua Johnson noted that this year has been full of strife, with Americans having a lot to stand up about. Whether the slaying of unarmed Black men and police brutality, or healthcare, and the coronavirus, Americans are lining up to protest.

Johnson asked if people try to start tough conversations, how do they keep it productive, and when it's time to give up. In her book, We Need to Talk, Celest Headlee explains tools that people can use to have productive conversations about tough issues that help move the needle.

"Keep in mind that a protest isn't a conversation, right?" she first began. "That's a different kind of communication. The first thing is that our goal in conversations is not always a productive one. In other words, oftentimes, we go into these conversations hoping to change somebody's mind or convince them that they are wrong. You're just never going to accomplish that. There's no evidence. We haven't been able to -- through years and years of research we haven't been able to find evidence that over a conversation somebody said, 'You're right, I was completely wrong.' You've convinced me. So, we have to stop trying to do that. We have to find a new purpose for those conversations."

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