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February 2017

Sunday, February 12: Dr. Stephen Zunes speaks on Trump's Middle East

When: Sunday, February 12 2017 @ 07:00 PM - - 09:00PM
Where: Unitarian Universalists of San Mateo
300 E. Santa Inez
San Mateo, CA 94401
Description: The presidential election results have turned some foreign policy perspectives on their heads, and near the top of the list is the situation regarding Israel and Palestine. Several previous U.S. administrations have put varying degrees of effort into achieving peace between Israel and the Palestinian territories, with an eye on each having its own land, government and dignity.

Now Donald Trump has chosen David Friedman - an avid Zionist who has stated his opposition to the two-state solution - to be the U.S. ambassador to Israel.

Trump's appointment would seem to forecast a "new normal" in U.S. participation in Israel/Palestine affairs. A Republican-controlled U.S. Congress could also prove complicit in such policy changes, though this is for now unclear after years of at least the appearance of a general desire for a peaceful solution in the region. That desire may have culminated in the recent U.S. abstention of the UN Security Council resolution calling on Israel to halt its settlements in the West Bank, in order to move toward a two-state solution.

To try to bring to light what it all could mean during the next administration, PASMC will host a talk by Dr. Stephen Zunes, who will talk about (and pose the question), "Trump, Congress, and Israel/Palestine: The End of a Two-State Solution?" It will be interesting to see what kind of material the first three weeks of the new administration reveal, if anything, on the subject...but enough has already been said for Dr. Zunes to be able to speculate on the future.

Dr. Zunes is a Professor of Politics and International Studies at the University of San Francisco, where he serves as coordinator of the program in Middle Eastern Studies. He is recognized as one the country's leading scholars of U.S. Middle East policy and of strategic nonviolent action. He has made frequent visits to the Middle East and other conflict regions, where he has met with top government officials, academics, journalists and opposition leaders.

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