Embargo Period


Degree Name

MA in Humanitarian Assistance and Crisis Management

First Advisor

Dr. Bayan Abdulhaq


This research explores the question, “To what extent has the ‘Deal of the Century’ impacted Palestinian aid organizations, and how might it impact them in the future?” The significance of this question lies in the fact that the “Deal of the Century” claims to solve one of the longest and most complex conflicts, yet it has not been sufficiently analyzed from a Palestinian perspective nor a humanitarian perspective. Furthermore, by presenting scholarly critiques of the deal and aid worker’s concerns, my hope is that an American audience may be convinced of the complicity of our government in devising a failed and harmful plan, develop empathy for peacebuilding in the region, and support a more inclusive approach when our government negotiates peace deals in the future.

To answer my research question, I interviewed ten people involved with organizations who give aid to Palestinians. I asked them questions regarding potential changes in their missions and objectives, their feelings about the deal, their knowledge of its details, and how it relates to Palestinian refugees. By grouping their responses into common themes, I present a small case study of what elements of this deal worried Palestinian aid workers, what they all agreed and disagreed upon, and what they speculated about. My findings showed that all participants were opposed to the deal and generally tried to ignore its implications for their beneficiaries, operating according to international law instead. They all hope that this deal is not realized after the removal of U.S. President Trump from office. In contrast, my participants could not agree on how severely the mere proposal of the deal had impacted their work. However, I believe that there is enough evidence to conclude that their mentality and cause have been harmed since the deal was proposed almost a year ago.

Lastly, this research found there is an overall need for a more inclusive peace deal, which can incorporate lessons learned from past peace deal failures and listen to aid organizations who represent the Palestinian cause. All participants proved to have great insight into the needs of refugees, the requirements for peace, and the roots of the conflict. I learned from them that, to even begin to create peace, a successful deal needs to involve the parties who represent the people involved, can advocate for their people’s needs, and are willing to make compromises.


Arabic Studies | Cultural History | Diplomatic History | Ethnic Studies | Indigenous Studies | International and Intercultural Communication | International Relations | Islamic World and Near East History | Jewish Studies | Leadership Studies | Near and Middle Eastern Studies | Political History | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies | Social and Cultural Anthropology