What Saudi Arabia Is Thinking

There’s talk of the new American administration moving closer to Iran. Could a Saudi step toward peace with Israel protect Riyadh from the troubles that might ensue?

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud at the State Department in Washington, D.C. on October 14, 2020. MANUEL BALCE CENETA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images.

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud at the State Department in Washington, D.C. on October 14, 2020. MANUEL BALCE CENETA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images.

Observation
Nov. 24 2020
About the author

Richard Goldberg is a senior advisor at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. He has served on Capitol Hill, on the U.S. National Security Council, as the chief of staff for Illinois’s governor, and as a Navy Reserve Intelligence Officer.


The last few months have brought a series of historic firsts to the Middle East, a region that for all its regular news-making has been stuck in a decades-long strategic stasis. Another first reportedly arrived two days ago: a clandestine meeting in Saudi Arabia between the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman. For now it is only an unconfirmed meeting, far from the momentous normalization treaties known as the Abraham Accords that Israel recently ratified with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, or its follow-on peace agreement with Sudan.

Create a free account to continue reading

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register

Create a free account to continue reading

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register

More about: Abraham Accords, Iran, Iranian nuclear program, Israel & Zionism, Israel-UAE Peace Agreement, Jamal Khashoggi, Joseph Biden, Middle East, Saudi Arabia