29 thoughts on “Trump’s Middle East Normalization Based on Bullying, Extortion – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Trump has done so much harm in so many areas that this one is forgotten easily. Maybe this is part of the reasoning behind this. Will what Trump has done be undone, or will it be by Biden should he win? In this case it’s the Palestinians who are again being betrayed for geopolitics and politics at home.

    Palestinians had Arab support. With that gone or severely weakened,what’s left is the threat of violence, civil unrest, and weak international pressure on Israel as it becomes more of an apartheid one state.This may have an effect on Israel’s business with democratic countries in a world that still respects principle and justice.

    Trump only knows threat as a way of doing business because it has worked for him for long years; he wields the power either with money (or the illusion of it) and now the power of the United States behind him. If he is the worst president we have ever had, most harmful to us and everyone else, and he is, then giving him this power is worst mistake WE collectively have so far ever made.

  2. Richard.
    What is your opinion of Israel and Lebanon directly engaging to discuss their maritime border?
    Is it a good idea?

    Should the two neighbors continue with these discussions and work out some security agreements for their shared land border?

    Should either side set conditions for holding these talks?

    1. @ MA Wunsch: The suggested talks, which have not materialized yet, are for one purpose only: to divide up the oil and gas in the Mediterranean so the oligarchs in each country can get even richer. These talks, if they ever happen, will not lead to peace or resolving security issues. And if Lebanon isn’t pliable in these talks, Israel will just take whatever it wants in the Mediterranean and leave Lebanon sputtering in rage at the affront to its sovereignty. This is one of the reasons Israel is beefing up its naval armaments–to defend against attacks against its oil facilities in the Mediterranean. It anticipates exploiting these resources without the cooperation of various neighbors like Lebanon, Syria or Turkey. Or in direct dispute with them over who owns what. Of course, it would prefer that Lebanon agree to Israel’s terms so that it doesn’t have to go to all that trouble.

      That’s cynical I know. But you can never be too cynical when it comes to how Israel pursues its regional interests.

  3. Bahrain has already normalized its relations with the State of Israel, they were co-signing the Abraham Accord alongside the United Arab Emirats.
    But Saudi Arabia has not and says it only will aften an Israeli peace treaty with the Palestinians, well, that’s as long as MBS hasn’t become the official leader.

  4. Not to mention the fact that Sudan hosted Osama bin Laden in the 1990’s, treating him royally.

    If Sudan has dug herself into a hole, can you really say that she is being ‘bullied’ into climbing out?

    It is also a puzzle why the world ignores Morocco’s occupation of Western Sahara while relentlessly criticizing Israel for her ‘occupation’.

    This double standard applies as well to Turkey’s occupation of Northern Cyprus.

    1. @ Wunsch: “Sudan” did not dig itself into a hole. Omar Bashir and his gang dug Sudan into a hole. Bashir is in a jail cell awaiting trial. He is at fault for Sudan’s past behavior. Not the people of Sudan, who are being held cruelly hostage for the benefit of regional powers like UAE and the Saudis, along with Israel and the U.S. I think everyone here would like to hear you speak out for the Sudanese people and call for immediate and unconditional removal from the U.S. Terror list and for wealthy regional states like UAE and others to offer unconditional humanitarian and economic aid.

      As for your claim regarding being “puzzled” about various occupations, this is an example of whataboutism. Don’t use that tired hasbara trope here. First, there is enormous opposition to each of these situations (and you left out some of the more usual hasbara examples of China’s occupation of Tibet and one little used by Hasbarist’s for obvious reasons, Indians occupation of Kashmir). Second, the subject of this blog is not world occupations. It is one specific country in the context of the region. If you need to protest those other situations I suggest you find other websites which deal with them (and there are many) including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, etc.

  5. A question- why will Sudan not have a relationship with israel? Why limit itself?
    They have their own interests in being able to do business in israel and have Israelis invest there.
    what right does anyone have in telling them how to run their lives?

    1. @ Jeal:

      why will Sudan not have a relationship with israel?

      First, because most of the country is Muslim and supports Palestine. Second, how will relations with Israel benefit Sudan? What does it need Israel will offer? Weapons? Not really needed? Cyber-weapons. Ditto. Economic aid? Why would Israel offer anything substantial to Sudan that would make a significant difference in its plight?

      Israelis will invest in Sudan? Really. What will they invest in? What financial or commercial infrastructure is in place in Sudan that would offer Israeli companies a market for their products? And even if there were, how would Sudan pay for any of it?

      But your solicitousNess toward the plight of the Sudanese is touching and duly noted. Thoroughly cynical and transparent, but duly noted.

  6. Why being a Muslim means anything about Palestinians? What is the connection? Are you saying the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is really a Jewish-Islamic conflict?

    Israel has a lot of agricultural technology to offer and Israelis have been involved in project in numerous countries. Pretending israel has only military technologies is ignorant and biased.

    1. @ Jeal: Slow down there, Jake. Primary rule: don’t extrapolate something very specific I say and distort it. Don’t ever paraphrase my words and try to argue anything beyond what I actually wrote. I said that Sudanese are sympathetic to Palestine because they are Muslim. It’s an uncontestable fact that most Muslims (except those in the Gulf who’ve betrayed Palestine) are sympathetic to the cause. The reasons should be clear to you as they are clear to almost anyone else who is sentient, so I won’t go into them. And of course, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a religious conflict. But not for the reason you believe. Rather, it is one because Judeo-fascist settlers and the government they hold captive have made it one. A funny thing happens when a country’s primary religious group announces it plans to destroy your country’s sacred religious shrines. It turns things into a religious war mighty fast. And of course Muslims have reacted in kind, which is to be expected.

      Sudan does not need agricultural technology. It needs investment, it needs economic and humanitarian aid. Israel neither can, nor wants to offer what Sudan really needs. The only product Israel has in abundance that Arab dictatorships appear to want is guns and cyber-war technology. That’s neither ignorant nor biased. It is fact. For example, tell me what’s on those 747s which land at Ben GUrion every week from UAE? Tomatoes? Cucumbers? Widgets? Refrigerators? Cell phones? No, you know what fills those cargo bays: weapons systems, drone surveillance and attack vehicles, spy gear, cyber security technicians to make it all work.

  7. Don’t ever paraphrase my words and try to argue anything beyond what I actually wrote” – why are you so sensitive about this? You do it to other all the time!

    Anyway, to argue Sudan would not want business with Israel and that the only thing Israelis can sell is weapon is stupid (sorry, I don’t have a better word to describe this). You “explain” why Sudan does not need Israel but it is based on thin air (or less) and simplifies reality to a level of a 3 years old.

    In fact Israeli in a great trading partner for many countries and there is no reason why wouldn’t Sudan enjoy it as well.

    And BTW, all these Muslim countries didn’t stop recognizing Israel in 1967, but in 1948. So arguing these countries do not recognize Israel b/c of the the Palestinian conflict, does not fit the facts.

    1. @ Jeal:

      why are you so sensitive about this?

      I make the rules here. I told you not to paraphrase or distort my words and argument. So don’t. You can make the rules at your own blog. But not this one. If you don’t like my rules…

      to argue Sudan would not want business with Israel and that the only thing Israelis can sell is weapon is stupid

      That isn’t what I “argued.” Another example of you distorting what I actually wrote. In fact, Sudan would love to do business with Israel I’m sure. But it has nothing Israel would want.

      And don’t insult me by demeaning my arguments by comparing them to a child. Next time you do that you are moderated or banned.

      all these Muslim countries didn’t stop recognizing Israel in 1967, but in 1948. So arguing these countries do not recognize Israel b/c of the the Palestinian conflict, does not fit the facts.

      As for the 1948 War, what do you think that war was about? It was about the Nakba. Who suffered in the Nakba? Martians? Of course it was Palestinians. So Israel has been at war with Palestinians since even before the State was founded. It will be at war with them for years to come.

      Israel has nothing to sell to Sudan. The Sudanese don’t have any money to buy anything other than food and basic necessities.

      Israel has no interest in doing business with poor impoverished countries which can’t pay their bills. It will offer things like agricultural aid which it offers to every African country it seeks to buy off. But this will hardly amount to much.

  8. @Richard

    I said that Sudanese are sympathetic to Palestine because they are Muslim.”

    Yet thousands of Sudanese mercenaries are killing fellow Muslims in Libya and Yemen for cash.

    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20201002-mercenaries-from-sudan-senegal-arrive-on-yemens-socotra/

    And Sudani Jangaweed militias are active in Libya, as well.
    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200812-libya-sudanese-mercenaries-there-to-support-haftar-says-gna/

    Perhaps things are not always as clear as black and white.

    1. @ Wunsch: You’re comparing apples and Oranges. Sudanese mercenaries are not the Sudanese people. They are desperate men who can’t feed their families and see a chance for a quick buck killing anyone they’ll pay them to kill.

      A man may do almost anything for a buck when he’s desperate. Things he would never do otherwise.

  9. These new Israel’s new best friends are either countries desperately needing financial aid from the “west” (like Sudan) or countries wanting weapons and military co-operation with the west. USA had invented to add in the packet this Israel aspect as the price for their western “gifts”. Israel alone is basically completely insignificant for Sudan or for these Gulf royal dictatorships. The Gulf countries have been buying the Israeli weapons and systems already for a long time without diplomatic relationships.

    If Israelis think that relations with Israel are benefiting the Gulf kings and crown princes more than it could cost them when things in Israel with Palestinians develop to worse (and they will), they do not understand the mood among normal citizens in these countries. Next time Israel disciplines Gaza Ghetto or Lebanon in a major way with its famous brutal style, it could trigger a regime change in some of these royal dictatorships especially if the regime silently and without actions lets the mass murder continue. And when one of these kingdom’s regimes falls others will follow. Also when one of these Israel’s new “allies” ends diplomatic relations during a major escalation with Palestinians and/or Lebanon others plus Egypt and Jordan will follow.

  10. We are in the 21st century. Countries are looking to expand their connection and trade options. It is called globalization.

    Can you tell us what does Sudan has to loose? What interest do they have to not normalize relationship which can benefit them?

    Your statement that Sudan has nothing to gain is ******** and *********.

    1. @ Jeal: Sudan is not part of the global economy. At best it is a minor player.

      “What does it have to lose?” Those were the very same infamous words Trump used to “entice” the African-American community to vote for him in 2016. They didn’t.

      Sudan, and every poor country entering the global market has a great deal to lose, including all of their localized products and markets which cannot compete globally.

      I warned you not to insult me. Eliding your insults is too cute by half. You are now moderated. Future comments, if you publish any, will be published if they respect the comment rules.

  11. Well Jeal what exactly could Sudan get from Israel it could not get cheaper from bigger countries like China etc? And what could Sudan sell to Israel what it could not sell anywhere else? Sudan’s main products in export in goods are Crude Petroleum ($1.05B), Gold ($1.03B), Other Oily Seeds ($691M), Sheep and Goats ($482M), and Insect Resins ($116M). In import Wheat ($494M), Raw Sugar ($436M), Packaged Medicament ($241M), Cars ($213M), and Rubber Tires ($140M). Sudan exports mostly to United Arab Emirates ($1.1B), India ($705M), China ($670M), Saudi Arabia ($566M), and Indonesia ($242M). Sudan imports mostly from China ($1.88B), United Arab Emirates ($893M), India ($786M), Saudi Arabia ($640M), and Russia ($505M).

    Sudan needs Israel as much it needs Honduras or Denmark.

  12. @SimoHurtta

    Sudan can sell her land to Israeli agribusiness, same as Sudan sells her land to Chinese agribusiness.

  13. Actually Israel has leased agricultural land in foreign countries. In Jordan after the peace treaty Israel leased some border enclaves. Last year Jordan ended the leasing and Israelis were angry.

    Israel/Israelis leasing agricultural land especially in Muslim countries would be a extremely risky business for the borrower and for the lender. What would be the reaction when Israel kills some thousand in Gaza Ghetto or tens of thousands in Lebanon? Even in Christian countries Apartheid-Israel leasing land is not a very good “idea”.

  14. A bargain ($$$) has been struck!
    Sudan to recognize Israel.

    https://www.jpost.com/arab-israeli-conflict/sudan-to-normalize-ties-with-israel-after-us-ultimatum-report-645798

    The ultimatum reportedly included an offer to remove Sudan from the list of states that sponsor terrorism, work to remove Sudan from a list of travel ban countries, work to increase aid to Sudan, commitment to facilitate private investment in Sudan, arranging an investment conference in Sudan and forgiveness of billions of dollars of Sudanese debt to the US, among other benefits, according to a Sudanese journalist.

    You see. That wasn’t so hard.

    1. @ Wunsch: Not so fast. The Post is known to publish hoaxes and false reports. Israeli pols are used to pushing false claims that turn out to be premature. According to this unverified report, Sudan was given an ultimatum till today to agree. I haven’t heard any statement from anyone that they have.

      Trump is also known for promising the world & failing to deliver. What is promised isn’t what necessarily happens. In this case, his promise isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. Hopefully, Sudan understands this and won’t barter away its leverage for a bowl of pottage as poor Esau did.

      You have a case of premature ejaculation here. Keep your “powder” dry until you really know what’s true or false.

    1. @ Wunsch: MEE is an “infoblog?” WTF is that?

      You don’t even bother to read your own sources. The MEE report is based on the same report as the Jerusalem Post. It’s from I24, whose story is undoubtedly dispatched from Bibi himself or one of his underlings. Please stop wasting your time & ours by beating this dead horse.

      Sudan may or may not recognize Israel. It certainly won’t be on your timetable or Bibi’s or Pompeo’s. But if it is, you’ll know that they got Sudan by the b***s and squeezed so hard they had no choice but to cave to the extortionate demands of some first rate Mafia thugs.

      No further comments in this thread.

  15. I thought it was Donald who had brokered the deal and got all credit Tony Blair caught red-handed or pockets lines with … ??

    Who attended the Abraham Accord signing?

    Tony Blair, former British PM and Middle East peace envoy for the Quartet of the UN, US, EU and Russia, was also a guest at the ceremony, which took place on the south lawn of the White House.

    His relationship with the Gulf state didn’t affect his important work trying to solve the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

    Why was Tony Blair being paid by the UAE while working as Middle East envoy?

    Breaking UK Covid-19 quarantine rules after his 2-day visit to Washington DC.

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