We knew it was coming. Oslo backers are already attempting to roll back President Trump’s advances on Middle East Peace and reinsert the antiquated “peace” process that was proven over the last few decades to be not only ineffective, but disastrous for the region.
Four countries met to revive the old Oslo framework that the Trump administration buried early on in its tenure. Using the coming Biden inauguration as a reset for the region, foreign ministers from Germany, France, Egypt, and Jordan to coordinate their strategies in order to bring the Oslo framework back onboard.
Despite their yearning for the Oslo days, even the incoming Biden administration has acknowledged that the region has changed.
An article in the VOA states the following about Biden’s intentions:
“While Biden plans to restore U.S. aid to the West Bank and Gaza cut off by Trump, he has indicated he will not roll back his predecessor’s policies on Israel, including the relocation of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and recognition of the Golan Heights as Israeli territory.”
The UAE-Israel peace deal has effectively lowered the value of both Jordan and Egypt. The combined power of the innovation economies and the strategic locations both Israel and the UAE hold make the Abraham Accords a formidable hurdle for any Oslo backer to get past.
This does not mean the UAE or Bahrain have forsaken a two-state solution between Israel and the “Palestinians,” it just means that the kind of deal France and Germany and members of the incoming Biden administration favor is not one that is implementable. More than that, any “Palestinian” state would quickly become an Iranian forward base. This outcome is something the UAE could not tolerate.
Expect a lot of behind the scenes pressure for those Arab countries who have signed the Abraham Accords, to use their agreement as leverage to force Israel into signing a deal with the “Palestinian” Authority. The challenge with this, is that the UAE doesn’t seem to care for the PA leadership; even calling them criminals.
For the UAE and Bahrain, they want to move forward and if that means undercutting a return to the Oslo peace plan, which would anger France and Germany then so be it. After all, it was the Obama/Biden Administration and France and Germany that pushed for signing the nuclear deal with Iran. Why would the UAE, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia follow them after that?
Then again, Biden’s policy as has been noted elsewhere will be dictated in part by Beijing who has been backing Iran as the regional hegemonic power. Breaking apart the burgeoning alliance between Israel and Sunni Arab states is critical for Tehran and in connection Beijing.
Biden may not prioritize sidelining the Abraham Accord, but he won’t go out of his way to push for its expansion either. Expect the Biden administration to try to use the “Palestinian” issue as a way of causing friction between Israel and its newest allies. Despite the UAE’s preference to ignore the PA, the Arab street has a way reeling in forward development.
Of course, it appears as far as the UAE street is concerned their interest in Israel far outweighs their faux concern with the “Palestinians.”