Trump's victory gives new hope to Israel's right

Like the rest of the world, Israel is guessing how the election of Donald Trump might change the direction of American foreign policy, but the early signs are encouraging for the ever-more powerful right wing of Israeli politics.

During the campaign, Trump promised to move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, and his advisers have spoken of how they do not see Jewish settlements in the West Bank — deemed illegal under international law — as necessarily obstacles to peace.

These positions are at odds with the idea that has underpinned American diplomacy in this part of the world for decades — the "two-state solution".

That is, that Israel should end its military occupation of the West Bank, thus allowing the creation of an independent Palestinian state alongside it.

With every settlement that’s built on that land, the two-state solution becomes less likely, as the Obama administration has never tired of pointing out.

Palestinians expect little support from Donald Trump Credit: ITV News

Indications that the Trump administration might be about to give up on it altogether have caused great excitement in some parts of Israeli society.

Settlers hope that they might no longer be censured by Israel’s greatest ally.

One hard-line member of the Israeli government, who wants to annex most of the West Bank, went as far as to say that "the era of a Palestinian state is now over".

Palestinians certainly expect little support from President Trump, but then they weren’t expecting much from a President Clinton either.

They have long grown used to American and international condemnation of the settlement shaving no practical effect on the ground.

Some Israeli hardliners want to annex most of the West Bank Credit: ITV News

Israel’s right-wing government will be looking forward to a much better relationship with the White House once the Republicans move in, but its wiser ministers will have some apprehension.

American aid to Egypt, Jordan and indeed the Palestinian Authority helps to keep Israel’s neighbourhood stable.

An isolationist President Trump may not be so keen to continue with these handouts.

To Israel’s north, if a Trump administration does reach understandings with President Putin in Syria, then that will strengthen the hand of Russia’s ally — and Israel’s arch-enemy — Iran.

Israel might be a lot friendlier with the new American president than it was with Mr Obama, but it might also be a little less secure.