Facing Increasing Irrelevance, Jordan Would Be Best Served by Joining the Abraham Accords

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.

Read more at JNS

More about: Abraham Accords, Israel diplomacy, Jordan, King Abdullah


How to Turn Palestinian Public Opinion Away from Terror

The Palestinian human-rights activist Bassem Eid, responding to the latest survey results of the Palestinian public, writes:

Not coincidentally, support for Hamas is much higher in the West Bank—misgoverned by Hamas’s archrivals, the secular nationalist Fatah, which rules the Palestinian Authority (PA)—than in Gaza, whose population is being actively brutalized by Hamas. Popular support for violence persists despite the devastating impact that following radical leaders and ideologies has historically had on the Palestinian people, as poignantly summed up by Israel’s Abba Eban when he quipped that Arabs, including the Palestinians, “never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.”

Just as worrying is the role of propaganda and misinformation, which are not unique to the Palestinian context but are pernicious there due to the high stakes involved. Misinformation campaigns, often fueled by Hamas and its allies, have painted violent terrorism as the only path to dignity and rights for Palestinians. Palestinian schoolbooks and public media are rife with anti-Semitic and jihadist content. Hamas’s allies in the West have matched Hamas’s genocidal rhetoric with an equally exterminationist call for the de-normalization and destruction of Israel.

It’s crucial to consider successful examples of de-radicalization from other regional contexts. After September 11, 2001, Saudi Arabia implemented a comprehensive de-radicalization program aimed at rehabilitating extremists through education, psychological intervention, and social reintegration. This program has had successes and offers valuable lessons that could be adapted to the Palestinian context.

Rather than pressure Israel to make concessions, Eid argues, the international community should be pressuring Palestinian leaders—including Fatah—to remove incitement from curricula and stop providing financial rewards to terrorists.

Read more at Newsweek

More about: Gaza War 2023, Hamas, Palestinian public opinion