Arab source: US demanded that the Palestinians not place preconditions on Israel-Saudi Arabia normalization

T. Belman. This is huge news if it proves to be true. I have been under the impression the the US wants to get the best deal possible for  the Palestinians and to secure the prospect of a TSS. The Saudis and the Israelis do not care about the Palestinians or the prospect of a TSS.

US wants talks on normalization between Saudi Arabia, Israel, with no preconditions from the Palestinian Authority, source says.


A Palestinian Arab source told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that Barbara Leaf, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, demanded that the Palestinian Authority not set preconditions for Saudi Arabia regarding a normalization agreement between it and Israel.

According to the source, Leaf said that the US is interested in normalization without a diplomatic price connected to the Palestinian Arabs.<

On Tuesday, The New York Times reported that a group of three PA envoys would travel to Saudi Arabia to discuss what the Palestinian Authority could gain from a normalization agreement between Israel and Saudi Arabia.

The Times also reported that although publicly, Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ office says it wants nothing less than a Palestinian state, Abbas is also seeking smaller demands: Among these are the restoration of Saudi support for the PA, US support for the PA’s bid to become a full member of the United Nations, and the transfer of more of Judea and Samaria to full PA control.

Also on Tuesday, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman published a column urging the US and Saudi Arabia not to go through with a deal to normalize Saudi-Israeli relations, claiming that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government “is not normal.”

T. Belman. Friedman wants normalization to advance the Palestinian cause knowing that the Israelis wouldn’t accept it and that such demands  it could bring down the government, which is what he wants. The Saudis want a defense pact with the US which would require a 2/3 vote in Congress. Were the deal to screw the Palestinians, it is likely a Defense Pact won’t find the needed 2/3. The US will have to skin this cat in some other way.

September 7, 2023 | 1 Comment »

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  1. The problem with Friedman’s column is that someone might read it. Sowing this kind of seed is destructive and he knows it.