On August 13th, 2020, a historic peace treaty was signed between the UAE and Israel. The two countries agreed to resume peaceful relations politically, economically, and socially. However, Palestine was not a part of the negotiations, nor was the media. To clarify, in 2019, when the media saw that Palestine was not present at U.S. President Trump's “Peace to Prosperity Summit” in Bahrain, little to no coverage of the treaty followed because they considered the gathering to be a failure. Trump’s Peace talks were intended to bring Middle East heads of state together led by Jared Kushner, Sr. Advisor to the president, to make a deal for peace.
Fast-backward to 2015 at Trump Tower in New York, where Trump asked a reporter from the Middle East about the feasibility of a UAE led peace treaty. Trump expressed his decade-old intentions to be the “architect of such a deal.”
After the 2016 election, Trump’s early foreign policy intentions were demonstrated by a pre-election visit with Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and a post-election visit to the UAE’s Sheik Mohammed bin Zayed and the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman (affectionately known as MBS). Trump began courting Israel by designating Jerusalem as the capital and relocating the U.S. Embassy from Tel-Aviv. Likewise, support was shored up in the Middle East through the $8 billion arms deal he brokered with Saudi Arabia by executive order, bypassing Congress’ approval. Trump had also been conversing with other leaders in Bahrain, Jordan, and Egypt to form an Arab Coalition. Is this diplomacy? The unorthodox methods of Trump have seemingly succeeded. Trump’s intentions carried out by Kushner brought allied counties in the Middle East together to counter regional extremism. Palestine has been left out. In the 1960’s, the U.S. exported democracy to third world countries around the globe through development aid. In 2020, Trump has outlined an unorthodox way to export democracy that is attractive to countries that might not need aid. The answer is money and power through commerce and arms. Emiratis are ready to hit the beaches in Tel-Aviv, but it remains to be seen what happens when they attempt to visit the West Bank. It is suggested that the next countries to join the peace accord will be Bahrain, Oman, Morocco, Kuwait, and Saudi, when MBS is in power. And what of Iran? If you are not participating in the Accord, you don’t reap the benefits of commerce, something Iran needs badly .And Turkey? They’ll likely be depending on Russia instead of the West. In biblical days, Father Abraham had two sons; Ismael was born of a wealthy Arabian mother and the Issac of a poor Jewish mother. The brothers fought over cultural and class issues that underscored wealth inequality. They made peace only when their father died. On August 13, 2020, the beginnings of peace were born anew after decades of failed attempts by previous U.S. presidents. The deal is not perfect, but in this case, success through orthodox measures has been put to rest by Trump’s unorthodox methods.