A Declaration of Palestinian Statehood Wouldn’t Be a Problem for Israel, Unless America Makes It One

At a press conference on Tuesday, the Palestinian Authority (PA) prime minister Mohammad Shtayyeh announced that, should the Jewish state go ahead with plans to apply sovereignty to parts of the West Bank, his government will unilaterally declare Palestinians statehood. What, asks Amnon Lord, would the consequences be?

Yasir Arafat already declared the establishment of a Palestinian state in November 1988, when he was still in Tunisia. In November 2012, the Palestinian Authority launched its diplomatic campaign to upgrade its status within the international community. As a result, many entities across the globe already view it as a “state.” For example, the ever-menacing International Criminal Court recognizes a Palestinian state, ergo the PA’s routine threat of “going to The Hague.”

That same year, the United Nations passed a resolution to upgrade the PA’s status from “non-state observer” to non-member state. . . . Many countries around the world circuitously recognize the PA as a state in such a way that it isn’t always clear what they mean when they say “recognition.” It appears the only development of substance and of potential concern to Israel—in the future—is . . . the [election in the U.S.] of a Democratic administration that would recognize a Palestinian state. And even then, Israel’s answer will be: we’re ready to negotiate peace with the Palestinians.

Read more at Israel Hayom

More about: Palestinian statehood, United Nations, US-Israel relations, West Bank

An American Withdrawal from Iraq Would Hand Another Victory to Iran

Since October 7, the powerful network of Iran-backed militias in Iraq have carried out 120 attacks on U.S. forces stationed in the country. In the previous year, there were dozens of such attacks. The recent escalation has led some in the U.S. to press for the withdrawal of these forces, whose stated purpose in the country is to stamp out the remnants of Islamic State and to prevent the group’s resurgence. William Roberts explains why doing so would be a mistake:

American withdrawal from Iraq would cement Iran’s influence and jeopardize our substantial investment into the stabilization of Iraq and the wider region, threatening U.S. national security. Critics of the U.S. military presence argue that [it] risks a regional escalation in the ongoing conflict between Israel and Iran. However, in the long term, the U.S. military has provided critical assistance to Iraq’s security forces while preventing the escalation of other regional conflicts, such as clashes between Turkey and Kurdish groups in northern Iraq and Syria.

Ultimately, the only path forward to preserve a democratic, pluralistic, and sovereign Iraq is through engagement with the international community, especially the United States. Resisting Iran’s takeover will require the U.S. to draw international attention to the democratic backsliding in the country and to be present and engage continuously with Iraqi civil society in military and non-military matters. Surrendering Iraq to Iran’s agents would not only squander our substantial investment in Iraq’s stability; it would greatly increase Iran’s capability to threaten American interests in the Levant through its influence in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon.

Read more at Providence

More about: Iran, Iraq, U.S. Foreign policy