By Michael Wilner, JPost—
At a standing desk in his cramped, high-ceilinged West Wing office, US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser has labored for nearly two years over a detailed plan for peace in the Middle East. Along the way he has granted a mere handful of interviews, none of which have provided much in substance of a plan that has, up until now, remained the administration’s most closely guarded secret.
But we’re about to see a lot more of Jared Kushner. As he puts the finishing touches on a project he hopes to be his crowning achievement in government, Kushner is preparing to sell it to the public.
State Department sources tell The Jerusalem Post that Kushner recently visited Foggy Bottom to begin preparing for a more public role centered on the plan. Moving into the spotlight would be a relatively new format for the prodigal son-in-law, who has rarely spoken in public since entering the White House. While Trump is likely to announce the plan in a formal speech, Kushner is expected, from that point on, to serve as the public face of the peace effort.
White House officials insist the administration has not settled on a strategic communications strategy for the roll out. But Kushner has beefed up his communications staff in recent weeks with outside hires and State Department veterans as he prepares for the plan’s release. He is anticipating intense media interest both in the contents of the plan, as well as its news value as a vehicle to discuss Kushner’s effectiveness as a government official.
Since joining Trump’s administration with no prior background in public service, Kushner has been criticized as being unqualified to lead such a delicate portfolio as Middle East peace. His White House team is well aware that their successful sale of the plan will in part become a public referendum on Kushner himself. Continue Reading…