President Trump announced that Israel and the United Arab Emirates would establish “full normalization of relations” and that in exchange Israel would forgo for now “declaring sovereignty” over occupied West Bank territory.

While I realize that most of you will appreciate the announcement yesterday for its historic nature, there are people who read this blog who are Democrats and the Middle East Peace agreement is something that many of the Democrat media outlets refused to cover.

President Trump: “Just a few moments ago, I hosted a very special call with two friends, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed of the United Arab Emirates, where they agreed to finalize a historical peace agreement. After 49 years, Israel and the United Arab Emirates will fully normalize their diplomatic relations. They will exchange embassies and ambassadors, and begin cooperation across the board and on a broad range of areas, including tourism, education, health care, trade and security. This is a truly historic moment. By uniting two of America’s closest and most capable partners in the region — some people said could not be done — this deal is a significant step towards building a more peaceful, secure and prosperous Middle East.”

President Trump said the deal would lead to greater cooperation on investment, tourism, security, technology, energy and other areas while the two countries move to allow regular direct passenger flights, open embassies and trade ambassadors for the first time.

“This is a black day in the history of Palestine,” Ahmad Majdalani, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Executive Committee.

Israel and the Emirates have long maintained a thinly veiled secret relationship over mutual interests, and the idea of formalizing it had come up several times over the past year. But the two sides essentially took it into the open after six weeks of indirect talks through Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, culminating in Thursday’s phone call between Mr. Trump, Mr. Netanyahu and Mohammed bin Zayed, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi and de facto ruler of the United Arab Emirates.

Both Israel and the Emirates, were happy to credit President Trump to advance their positions in Washington, and the president plans to stage a celebratory White House signing ceremony in coming weeks.

“This is a historic evening,” Mr. Netanyahu said at a news conference. “Today, a new era began in the relations of the state of Israel with the Arab world.” President Reuven Rivlin of Israel invited Prince Mohammed to visit Jerusalem, while the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality building was illuminated with the flags of Israel and the Emirates.

In a statement, Prince Mohammed emphasized the annexation suspension. “During a call with President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu, an agreement was reached to stop further Israeli annexation of Palestinian territories,” he wrote. “The UAE and Israel also agreed to cooperation and setting a roadmap towards establishing a bilateral relationship.”

The rapprochement underscored the shifting political dynamics of a region where Sunni Arab states increasingly see Iran as a greater enemy than Israel and are less willing to condition relations on a resolution of the conflict with the Palestinians. The Mossad, Israel’s intelligence agency, has invested in clandestine relations with the Gulf States for years, and its director, Yossi Cohen, has met frequently with counterparts in the Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan and Egypt, according to reports.

Sultan Qaboos bin Said of Oman hosted Mr. Netanyahu for a state visit in 2018 that Mr. Cohen helped broker, even though the two nations have no diplomatic relations, and the tiny island kingdom of Bahrain hosted a White House-led conference last year meant to kick off President Trump’s plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace.

Those two Gulf States could follow the Emirates in formalizing relations with Israel, but the big player remains Saudi Arabia, the Arab world’s richest country and caretaker of the Islamic holy sites in Mecca and Medina. Analysts said they suspected that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom’s de facto ruler, would like to take such a step but will refrain given conservative elements in his country.

18 COMMENTS

  1. This is very momentous. Far better than TR’s work on solving the Russo-Japanese war.

    And this isn’t the first time Trump has made huge inroads into fixing international issues, but yet he gets no credit.

    Ah, well. We know who the real fixer is. And it isn’t Bath-House Barry and his administration.

    And now I see why the Left is so against Jared K. from participating in Trump’s admin.

    • Yes, it’s a momentous move in the right direction and one more move against Iran. I’m sure that Barack and Valerie Jarrett are beside themselves.

    • Things are going in the right direction. Don’t expect an acknowledgement from CNN or MSNBC, because all you get there is 24/7 hate.

  2. Yet another “git er done” seriously incredible accomplishment by this President that none of his predecessors could even approach doing. Way to go Mr. Trump. As for the sour mouth naysayers who could only talk about his mask policy, envy rots the soul.

    • The Palestinians are not happy with the arrangement. Eventually the Saudis will join the rest of the Arab world and then there will just be the Persians.

  3. For 40 freaking years the US has been trying to solve the Palestinian Problem, because everyone said that was the only way to solve the Middle East problems between Israel and the Arabs. It was “The Middle East Peace Process(TM)(R)”. Reagan, Clinton, both Bushies, and Obama tried the same tactics and failed. Every time: Make Israel give up a bunch of terrorist murderers sitting in prison, maybe some land, and the US gives millions or billions of dollars, then the Palestinians say NO! and go right back to trying to kill the Jews.

    Along comes President Trump. “I am moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem.” OMG! The same people that did the Palestinian Peace Processes for 40 years all said: There will be rioting, chaos, death and destruction, governments could fall!!! Actually, a couple of rocks were thrown, then everyone said, “Ho Hum?”

    Trump says, “You know, Israel has controlled the Golan Heights for forty five years, they should just keep them.”

    Now he and Prime Minister Netanyahu are normalizing relations with the Gulf States, Egypt, and Jordan. Soon the Palestinians will be on the outside looking in. Their allies like Hezbollah and Hamas are now as broke as their patron Iran.

    How did that happen? Oil rich Iran is broke? Clinton, Bush and Obama could never ever find a way to put real sanctions on Iran. Suddenly this Orange Buffoon has Iran on the ropes? In three short years? How?

    What a lucky bum?!?

    • Obama worked hard to give Iran the edge over the Saudis. He had an affinity toward them, and though I think he was an atheist, there was always his Muslim roots – and their constant calls of “death to America” which reached him at some level and resounded with him. And there was Obama’s hatred of Israel. They shared that as well.

  4. I suspect Israel announcing it would absorb the West Bank earlier this year was done on purpose, to create a counterparty that could be given up, and provide the UAE with a “Victory” to show the rest of the arab world. No doubt DJT and Kushner will have been in on the whole gambit: Saying “Absorb the Golan” provided additional cover. Kudos to Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed, he’s taking on impressive personal risk. On the other hand, open economic links between Israel and the UAE will enrich both countries to no end.

    Were I Israel, I’d look into procuring three or four additional deployable Iron Dome batteries, with enough personnel to ensure 24/ 7/ 365 rotations far from Israel itself, until the assets can be transferred to local allies (for a negotiable fee) and local operators trained. This would entail strong force protection measures, but I’m sure the potential hosts would take great care of expert ABM defence personnel, given the nature of the local threat, and the vast amounts of precious infrastructure that would be lost in case of attack.

    • I think that you’re right, Claudio. Israel, defensive in nature, is a natural ally against Iran and the nations which would harm the UAE. Bahrain the same. Qatar has allied itself with Iran though it’s tough to know where they REALLY stand.

  5. This event should be the banner headline on every news outlet. It’s the biggest foreign-affairs news in at least a decade.

    Mostly it’s on the bottom of the page, or off the front page entirely.

    Rumor has it, Bahrain and some other Gulf States are on deck; the slam dunk will be if/when Saudi Arabia joins the party.
    -Kle.

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