When former President Trump brokered normalization agreements between four Arab states and Israel last year, it was a historic achievement. Even then presidential candidate Joe Biden said “It is good to see others in the Middle East recognizing Israel and even welcoming it as a partner,” adding “a Biden-Harris administration will build on these steps.”
Instead, President Biden has turned his back on our greatest ally in the region, Israel, is dismantling the Abraham Accords piece by piece, and has returned to the Obama-era policies of funding terrorists. All to achieve a nuclear agreement with Iran.
No longer are Israel’s enemies America’s enemies.
The Abraham Accords were the first step forward at achieving peace in the Middle East since Israel signed a treaty with Jordan in 1994. The Trump administration was able to negotiate the deal by removing the corrupt and indignant Palestinian Authority from the process. Four Arab states were then able to create an alliance with Israel to combat their common foe in the region, Iran.
It was the Trump administration’s goal to bring more Arab states into the agreement, such as Saudi Arabia and Indonesia, as to further isolate the Palestinian Authority and place pressure on them to return to the negotiating table with Israel in good faith.
The Trump administration shuttered the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) office in Washington, D.C., cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority, moved the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, and recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, all in an attempt to coerce Palestinian cooperation in Middle East peace talks.
To ensure there was no “daylight” between the U.S. and Israel, the U.S. withdrew from Obama’s Iranian nuclear deal and ordered a lethal strike against Qasem Soleimani.
Unfortunately, we’ll never know if Mr. Trump’s realpolitik strategy would’ve worked, as the Biden administration has completely abandoned it. Their ideological priority in the region is to renew the Iranian nuclear deal, and they find the founding principles of Abraham Accords a nuisance.
In Mr. Biden’s first days in office he pledged to restore U.S. taxpayer funding to the Palestinian Authority, which uses the money to pay terrorist salaries and advance war crime allegations against Israel in the International Criminal Court, to the tune of $250 million.
On Wednesday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced the U.S. is in the process of providing more than $360 million in additional assistance to the Palestinian people, including $38 million in new assistance to support humanitarian efforts in the West Bank and Gaza.
Suddenly, the Palestinian Authority is back in the game and the U.S. is back in the business of funding terrorism. The Biden administration admitted this week, it couldn’t guarantee the additional aid wouldn’t be used against Israel in the form of new rocket attacks.
“We’re going to be working in partnership with the United Nations and the Palestinian Authority to kind of channel aid there in a manner that does its best to go to the people of Gaza,” a State Department official said, according to a transcript.
“As we’ve seen in life, as we all know in life, there are no guarantees, but we’re going to do everything that we can to ensure that this assistance reaches the people who need it the most,” the official added.
It was much akin to former Secretary of State John Kerry admitting in 2016 some of the money Iran received in U.S. sanctions relief would be funneled to groups considered terrorists, but there wasn’t anything the U.S. could do to prevent it. An Iranian deal had to be made.
Sorry, Israel. The U.S. no longer has your back.
The four other Arab nations in the Abraham Accords, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Sudan and Morocco, are also beginning to realize their treaty may not come to fruition as the Biden administration continues to pursue negotiations with their No. 1 enemy Iran.
Part of the deal Mr. Trump struck with the U.A.E to entice them to normalize relations with Israel was a $23 billion sale of F-35s, America’s most advanced jet fighters. A week into the Biden administration, his State Department said it was “placing a hold” on the sale pending its review and on Wednesday it was reported China’s People’s Liberation Army landed two planes in the U.A.E and “unloaded crates of undermined material,” according to the Wall Street Journal.
It’s understandable the U.A.E maybe looking to hedge against the U.S., as the Biden administration moves forward in its courting of Iran and the sale of its F-35s comes into question.
President Biden lied to the American people when he said his administration would build off the Abraham Accords and continue to be a strong ally to Israel. In his reckless pursuance of a deal with Iran, he’s putting the security of the Middle East in jeopardy and undoing historic advancements made in the region.
• Kelly Sadler is commentary editor at The Washington Times.