Two weeks ago, Israel canceled a visit by Jordan’s Crown Prince Hussein to the Temple Mount after he sought to come with a large entourage of heavily armed guards. His father, King Abdullah, responded by closing his country’s airspace to Prime Minister Netanyahu, who consequently had to reschedule a planned trip to the United Arab Emirates. Caroline Glick explains the underlying reasons for this spat:
One of the regional developments that keep Abdullah up at night is the still-unofficial alliance between Israel and Saudi Arabia. Abdullah lives in fear that in exchange for Riyadh’s official normalization of ties, Israel will provide the Saudis with a formal role in managing the mosques on the Temple Mount at Jordan’s expense. For its part, as the current custodian of the mosques on the Temple Mount, Jordan has torpedoed every Israeli effort to stabilize the situation at the holy site.
Jordan’s effective irrelevance in a post-Arab-Israeli-conflict Middle East, where Abraham Accords members and supporters dominate the economic and strategic landscape presents Jordan with a choice between two paths. It can continue to . . . insist that all [further] normalization [with Jerusalem] must be contingent on an Israeli surrender of Judea, Samaria, and northern, eastern, and southern Jerusalem—including the Temple Mount. If it does this it will continue to stand at the sidelines—in crushing poverty—as Israel and other Arab states gallop towards unprecedented prosperity and joint development.
Abdullah’s second option is to follow the Egyptian president Abdelfattah el-Sissi’s lead and make his country an adjunct member of the Abraham Accords. Among other things, he can agree to a major expansion of the industrial parks on both sides of the Jordan River, in keeping with the Trump administration’s vision for economic peace. Such a move would, in short order, create hundreds of thousands of jobs for Jordanians, Palestinians, and Israelis and draw billions of dollars in foreign investment to all sides.