Naftali Bennett’s visit to the United Arab Emirates, turning to the Middle East


It is the culmination of the alliance forged by Donald Trump, the famous Abraham Accords. Naftali Bennett is right to be lyrical because no one will be in his place. The Emiratis discreetly greeted the Prime Minister. The press was not invited to the finish and there was no official press release. Part of the population remains opposed to normalization and it is easy to understand: for 70 years they have been taught that the devil in the Middle East was called the Zionist entity. The Arab world had to fight every single Palestinian and say no to Israel. No recognition, no negotiations, no peace. Three times no, like an exorcism.

Of course there were compromises with Satan. Emirati and Israeli intelligence officials saw each other at night, as we say in Africa. Relations developed in the 90s and have been a whirlwind for a year. EL AL flights are full, tourists disembark, bankers too. Agreements are signed in everything from taxation to high tech. Israel has opened an embassy in Abu Dhabi and plans to invest $10 billion. What was absolutely evil suddenly became supremely good. The Arab-Israeli conflict has subsided.

front line towards Tehran

Another war is about to begin. The Gulf States and Israel are on the same front against Tehran. Your vital interests are at stake. Abu Dhabi is less than 100 kilometers from the Revolutionary Guards (Iran), for whom Israel is high on their list of targets to kill. This common enemy unites them under the powerful American wing.

In the spring, the B-52 strategic bombers flew over the Middle East with an escort of Israeli, Saudi and Qatari F-15 fighters. One can hardly spread one’s power by being clearer. And this is the second reason that could explain yesterday’s reluctance of the emirate (the first reason is the hostility of the Emirati people towards Israel).

The nuclear question

We are at a turning point in arm wrestling around nuclear power. The Biden team was in a hurry to negotiate as the Iranians are playing for time. They talk about the agenda but never live. They reject the tete-a-tete with the American delegation. They stopped everything in June because of the presidential elections in Iran. And it lasts. It took five full months. Meanwhile, centrifuges ran at full speed and IAEA inspectors stayed at the gates of sensitive facilities. Democratic government has resigned itself to considering something else. Plan B – like boom, badaboum! – the G7, meeting in London yesterday, said this is Iran’s last chance to come up with a serious solution. Washington says the armies of the United States, Israel, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates are training together in the Red Sea.

The Iranians apparently got the message for the first time yesterday and welcomed the progress made in Vienna. We can’t see which ones. All we see is that the Emiratis are cowering and their crown prince wants to discuss security with the Israeli prime minister.

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