Saudi editor: Peace with Israel now only option for Arab nations
Peace agreements with Israel are the only option left for Arab nations that have opposed the Middle East’s premier democracy for generations, says the editor of a Saudi daily.
Khalid bin Hamad Al-Malik, the editor of Al-Jazirah, wrote Sept. 13 — two days before the Israel-UAE-Bahrain peace deals — that the Arab nations must recognize their past efforts have failed, according to the Middle East Media Research Institute.
“The Arabs have no option but to normalize [relations] and establish full diplomatic ties with Israel. They tried war and were defeated; they tried hostility towards Israel and gained nothing; they tried to reconcile [with Israel] on their own terms and failed,” he wrote.
“Finally they tried peace as a way to achieve what they have failed to achieve through war.”
He said he agrees “with certain Palestinian leaders who said that the Palestinian cause is their affair and not the affair of the Arabs, and that they, the Palestinians, are responsible for establishing their state in all the Palestinian territories through armed struggle.”
“This is [precisely] why the Arabs are entitled to normalize relations with Israel and establish full ties with it, for the Palestinians have already shouldered the responsibility of regaining their legitimate rights and establishing a state with Jerusalem as its capital, and have no need of the Arabs who have normalized their relations with Israel,” wrote Malik.
“However, I do not support their objection to any Arab country agreeing to recognize Israel, since such recognition does not negate the demand to attain the [Palestinian] rights, and does not hinder their ability to compel Israel to surrender land that belongs to them according to international resolutions.”
Malik suggested the Arab recognition of Israel may even persuade the Jewish state to meet some of the Palestinians’ demands.
He said it was apparent that “the experience of 70 years of hostility toward Israel does not suggest that the future would have been any better.”
Recognizing Israel, he said, is within the sovereignty of each nation.
“The storm will soon die down, and the Palestinians will accept the Arab countries’ recognition of Israel, even if some Palestinians and Arabs continue to trade in the Palestinian cause,” Malik said.
The edito affirmed the Trump administration’s indication that many more Middle East nations are on the verge of peace agreements with Israel.
“Other Arab countries can be expected to follow in the UAE’s and Bahrain’s footsteps and recognize Israel,” he wrote.
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