Fatah Central Committee member Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh said that the "war" waged by U.S. President Trump "against UNRWA and against Jerusalem" was also a war against the United Nations and that the American clout in the world was diminishing. Al-Shtayyeh said that a Democrat win in the midterm elections would spell "complete paralysis of the Trump administration," but added that things would be worse if Trump was impeached, because while Trump is "motivated by money and business," VP Mike Pence is "driven by a Christian-Zionist ideology." The interview with Al-Shtayyeh was posted on the Ma'an News Agency's YouTube channel on August 29, 2018.
The following are excerpts:
Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh: The war waged by the U.S. today is not just against us [Palestinians]. The war against UNRWA and against Jerusalem is also a war against the United Nations and its resolutions. Let me remind the viewers that when we turned to the U.N. Security Council, 14 states voted against Trump. He stood there alone.
Host: That’s right.
Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh: That means that the whole world is against him, even on the Palestinian issue.
Host: Is Trump going to fall?
Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh: In my opinion, we should wait for November 6.
Host: Why this date?
Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh: That is when the midterm elections for the Congress and Senate will be held. If the Democrats win the majority of the Congress and Senate seats, I think this will lead to two things: first of all, complete paralysis of the Trump administration, because it will not be able to pass any bills in Congress, and secondly – and this is something Trump talked about two days ago... He is the first U.S president to say that if he is impeached, the world markets would crash and everybody would pay the price. Therefore...
Host: Do you believe him?
Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh: I think that Special Counsel Mueller's strategy for dealing with Trump is to go from the bottom up and gradually tighten the noose around his neck. That's because the main problem of the U.S. is that its interests in the world are starting to be affected, and its clout in the world has started to weaken – it has not completely collapsed, but it is diminishing. At the same time, the anti-U.S. camp has begun to expand. What's more important for us, the states that stood beside us in the U.N. did not do it only for Palestine, but for themselves too.
Host: If Trump stays in office, he will certainly continue his policy. What will happen if he leaves office?
Muhammad Al-Shtayyeh: Things will be worse. That's because Trump is a president motivated by money and business. The vice president, who will take his place... If Trump is gone, he will be replaced by Vice President Pence. Pence is driven by ideology, whereas Trump is not. Pence is driven by a Christian-Zionist ideology.