Transcript for Israel-UAE deal ‘lowers the barriers’: Former ambassador
The landmark agreement to normalize relations between Israel and be United Arab Emirates the UAE becoming only the third Arab country to establish formal ties with Israel. Joining Egypt and Jordan so what does this mean for the future of the Middle East. Joining me now to provide some insight Daniel Shapiro former US ambassador to Israel under the Obama administration. Ambassador Shapiro thank you so much for being with us tonight. Are you. You called this deal good news and you've said it's part of a bipartisan. Goal to normalize relations between Israel and Arab nations but. Former Obama deputy national security advisor Ben rose tweeted. This agreement and shrines. What has been the emerging status quo in the region for a long time including the total exclusion of the Palestinians. Dressed up as an election eve achievement. For two leaders who want trump to win so I want to ask you does the trop administration deserve credit for fostering this DL. And what do you think the implications are that happening now. Well certainly to join administration worked on it and there's credit should be derive from that. As I said this was. A goal or this has been a goal of every administration going back at least thirty years longer. Two. Gradually expand the circle of their patients and normal laws there are relations with Israel it's been supported by Republican and democratic administrations. There's been progress. During the Egyptian peace treaty a majority Ichi street. And it is true that over the last decade or so Israel's relations with number of gulf states and specially the United Arab Emirates became close server and look more developed even Molly remain social and originally in the shadows and then more recently been audio. So wasn't as big a little leaks of the United Arab Emirates should take the final step to normalize. Their relations with Israel. But it isn't welcome step it is good news that it does expand the circle host nations in the region this girl does normalize relations with. But that's good for the United States so that US partners are with each other that does reduce risk of conflict and treat many opportunities for cooperation. In business science technology and and security force. These two nations share common enemies like you're wrong and a jihadist movements so it's definitely good news. Now it is also important though that'd be leveraged to re energized progress toward a two state solution. Net will achieve Palestinian rights for a state of their own and achieve Israel's desire speech secure and retains Jewish and democratic you're democratic or her. So long term. That's why was very important that the risks that unilateral annexation by Israel in the West Bank. Which was on the table be taken off the table and at least in diagonal table what triggered walker Todd was included in this this agreement. And and the drug administration or its next year the Biden administration. Shoot shell aspects of the trump and neutral plan. Which were not really realistic two state solution to return to something the Palestinians and Israelis can boast a rod the outcomes they desire and deserve. Which is a two state solution to serve spoke partisans. As you mentioned the UAE and Israel have been cooperating overtly for years so you touched on this briefly but what are the tangible impacts that we could see this agreement having on the dynamics in the Middle East. No question that Israel via the United Arab Emirates have already been shared intelligence and you insured various forms of so other security coordination. Including some technologies. In the service. There are dressing share dress number one you wrong it's sort of nuclear weapons it's. A threat by sponsoring proxies and and certain shipping and sponsored terrorist organizations. That threaten both of those nations and others but in the region that's an ongoing but now can be conducted even more openly. And that's a benefit to coalition of countries actually is part of it that police are wrong pose a serious threat to regional security. But already in recent years many Israeli companies. With a range of technologies. Are from communications to water energy health care. Particularly relevant during the Conoco chief. Have found business opportunities in the United Arab Emirates and its first sort of behind the scenes and now that can be conducted opened and it lowers the barriers or other forms of cultural exchange academic exchange athletic exchanges. Tourism travel in boats in both directions. That's something and frankly Israel has not fully achieved and trees trees from Egypt and Jordan which are relatively cold peace. Uncle teaches between leaders don't have much of people people aspect to this. Or agreement to normalize relations believe represents our two countries that are Urquhart or it's further because they see real opportunities to expand their cooperation all those Sierens. That drug administration said yesterday that they expected that other Arab nations could follow suit and do you think this could have a domino affect all I seem to be trained squarely on Saudi Arabia. I do you think it is possible that other gulf states will follow the UAE's lead more likely rain and Obama would be early candidates. They have certainly already had some engagements with Israeli leaders in artificial ways but they seem further along the path toward normalization. Saudi Arabia would be obviously the most influential Saudi six I think it's less likely to battle as soon there's a lot of this is at this notion Saudi society. There's a Saudi leadership that does that includes both young. There are class act operas but also older more traditional king. And they may not be on exactly the same page on this issue so that may not happen in the ability but let's also be part of this school but again these are steps that stunned to reduce from which Israel and the states that normalized with a can derive benefit. United States can derive benefit but it's leveraged and uses a basis for further progress first by shelling annexation and then by re energizing diplomacy. It can actually increase the likelihood of achieving a two state solution that serves Palestinians the Palestinians may feel unhappy about this agreement today but it is used properly can actually can work out for their purchases were. Israel has agreed to temporarily halt its planned annexation of parts of the West Bank youth praise of this. Given that prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu is already facing increased pressure from the right wing parties how long do you think this can actually hold. The threat of annexation to any remaining prospects for two state solution which is critical for Israel's future for Palestinians future and for American interest. I was very severe been an urgency does harsh critic. The proposed annexation is opposed by virtually every leader of the Democrat there are states that many European nations Arab nations. Many in Israel even believe it would be girder Oracle. So it was something that should never include on the table to try administration mistakenly. Included it as part of the plan that they announced in January of this year. Then there was a debate internally fortunately did not advanced. And the good news as it does it take it off the table. Up my understanding is that there's a very specific commitments for a significant period of time where this will return. Oh that's permanent. It nobody can predict all lesson errors in the future but I don't see a scenario. Where to United Arab Emirates having made this decision. To catch you normal laws specifically Edinburgh postage Israel as a choice either you annexed the West Bank or you can normal us what you rhetoric you can't do both. It's not going to find itself humiliated by Israel moving forward with annexation. Prime minister Netanyahu may. Have to describe to various political supporters who remembers his coalition in Israel that he still intends to try to do this and coordination the United States. I don't see any prospect that you will be able do that there render the administration and I Cesar prospect that it would like demonstration. So for the time being annexation is off the table open stereo we don't see it return. We return instead to are realistic negotiations on a two state solution it's urged. Both Palestinians and Israelis news. And speaking about the Palestinian Authority has slammed this deal saying that this is just a move that rewards Israel for occupation. So what does this mean for Palestinian relations both with Israel and the Arab world writ large and is in how could this. Affect any efforts to restart the stalled Israeli Palestinian peace process. Palestinians are understandably. Disappointed that the Arab peace initiative in which all orderly numbers had signed on June. Placed a sequence that first a two state solution would be achieved and then. Arab states would normalize it Israel. And obviously the UAE has chosen chick will act. Acts separate from that sequence and other nations may be considered in this news of that eighty frustrating. Two Palestinians. There doesn't mean that opportunities are lost it certainly means at one chase leader being risk has been removed the risk of annexation. But the Palestinians. We still have an opportunity to work with the United States I hope it'll be it white administration. And with our air nations to reenergize to build on this announcement as a basis for broader circle countries of the region want to work together that you want to see Israel stated else eluding impeach another. Santa silence there have to get all too often. Palestinians have sat out of negotiations walk away from negotiations. And that has slowed in some degree. Cause summer states you read her salon and to lose patience and decide they want rules or other interest. Doesn't mean the Palestinians are solely to blame it on it responsibility Israel has responsibility for real negotiations. And ultimately the United States is going to need to be the sponsor or renewed vigorous to elect effort to get back. You talking about 26 so a Palestinians. I'm not surprised there are dealing. Are unhappy and end betrayed by this Decision Day. But I hope that look beyond the media not feelings and thus he opportunities first good news as shelling annexation. And and the opportunities it can work with air states today in the United States under renewed. For tortures its. Ambassador Shapiro thank you so much for sharing your insight with us we really appreciate it. You so much.
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