Senior Defense Officials Warn Annexation Would Endanger Israel’s Peace With Jordan

Jordan’s King Abdullah is facing internal pressure, top officials say in assessment conveyed to political leaders, sounding the alarm about ramifications of any unilateral moves for relations with Amman and the situation in the West Bank

Amos Harel, HAARETZ

The helm of the Israeli security establishment has expressed worry recently about the future of the relationship between Israel and Jordan. With the presentation of the U.S. administration’s peace plan, and especially given Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s intent to announce the annexation of the Jordan Valley, the top brass has been warning against unilateral steps that could influence the future of ties with Amman.

According to this assessment, which has been conveyed to the senior politicians, King Abdullah of Jordan is under a host of domestic pressures that are making things difficult for his regime.

Abdullah is under fire for the country’s economic situation and the many cases of government corruption that have been uncovered. Many elements in Jordan, including the Muslim Brotherhood, vehemently oppose to the close diplomatic and security ties the kingdom maintains with Israel. An uncoordinated move by Israel, especially an announcement about annexing the Jordan Valley, could challenge those ties. Some assessments say that annexing the valley might even undermine the peace treaty between the two countries.

Before the September elections, Netanyahu had planned to announce that he was bringing a bill to annex the Jordan Valley to the cabinet for a vote. He dropped the idea at the last minute and made do with a general statement about his plan to annex the area after the elections, which came to nothing when it became clear he couldn’t establish a government.

Journalist Ben Caspit reported in Maariv at the time that Netanyahu changed his mind after a stormy telephone consultation with top security officials, during which Chief of General Staff Aviv Kochavi and Shin Bet security service head Nadav Argaman warned of the serious consequences that could result. One assumes those warnings are being repeated now.

The main concern of the security establishment is the impact on the relations with Jordan. In the Palestinian arena, there is currently no focused warning of a plan to destabilize the territories following the Trump initiative.

The Palestinian Authority and Hamas may have condemned the U.S. move and the Israeli annexation comments, but the “day of rage” called for Wednesday in the territories passed with few incidents and relatively minor demonstrations. In the longer term, the Palestinian response will probably be influenced by what Israel actually does. An annexation announcement could make more extensive and violent riots more likely.

Meanwhile, contrary to Netanyahu’s original intention, immediate moves toward annexation have been postponed. On Tuesday evening Netanyahu and his spokesmen said he was planning to bring a bill to annex the Jordan Valley and all the West Bank settlements to the cabinet on Sunday for a vote. It seems that the main reason for the delay, whose duration isn’t clear, is American objections. The Trump administration is insisting there be a convening of a bilateral coordination committee before a decision is made – an objection that could put off any move toward annexation to after the Knesset election on March 2.

January 30, 2020 | 14 Comments » | 499 views

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14 Comments / 14 Comments

  1. Kushner has detailed maps are needed by Israelis on where they will apply sovereignty. These then need to be presented to a joint US- Israeli committee so the US can give its blessing.

    The Fatah has a song out on Facebook threatening anyone who goes along with Trump plan (See PMW for translation).

  2. The Trump “peace plan” is doomed to failure just like all the other peace plans and peace negotiations were. Ultimately, the underlying cause of the conflict is the refusal by the Moslem world, of which the Palestinians are a part, to recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state in any borders. The reason is that the sacred doctrines of Islam command Moslems to make war on the Jews and to subjugate them, not to make peace with them.

  3. “insula” is the Arab word for the acceptance of the will of their god. Once something is imposed on them, they learn to suck it up and move on. Jordan can do the same and are on notice that the JV is out of their bounds.

  4. @ DEAN BLAKE:
    The JV has not been in their control since 1967. So just applying sovereignty means no more than a legal, documented form of what is in place already. The amount of “fuss” that Jordan can REALLY make can be “cut off at the pass” by playing “the water card”, nd/or several others that causes Israel to hold Jordan by the “painful parts”. All it would mean would be that the IDF might have to deploy more men and be more on the alert. Make a big show of installing a few heavy weapons etc.

    We give a lot of -for Jordanian public consumption- of “deference” to the little tin-pot Hampty Dumpty, on his tottering throne, and major protection, as in the past…..if you remember the history of the area.
    Without which he would have had no parents have produced him….and which, by implication, has protected Jordan ever since ….

  5. @ Adam Dalgliesh:

    Well…I could say (as it very often does) it refers to the “King James Version”…or to J.V. Luce the Classics Emeritus Professor and Public Orator, when you were actually right there, doing your PhD at Trinity College..

    {l’ve written about him on here before, as a fellow cricketer and opponent of mine..also the man who, with Professor Marinatos, researched the Med Island of Thera (Santorini), scuba diving to find the remains of the sunken Minoan city of Akrotiri, destroyed when the Volcano blew about 1500 BCE, completely destroying the Minoan civilisation. along with other accompanying volcanic action. ( It was 4 times as powerful as Krakatoa..which tells you something) Around the reputed time of the Exodus, in fact…If you’ve read some of the Egyptian papyri like the Ipuwer Papyrus, you’ll immediately see the reltive connection.}.

    But actually Adam my friend..it refers to “The Jordan Valley”…which the context might have hinted to you……Don’t worry, I sometimes have the same ….

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