How Does the Middle East Impact Global Politics?

The hope that Israel would abandon its repression, colonization, and apartheid policies and accept a negotiated settlement of the Palestine problem under pressure from the United States has proven delusional. Today, the dilemma facing US President Joe Biden at 80 is whether a paradigm shift is possible.

History demonstrates that while catastrophic events can have negative impacts, they can also have positive long-term effects, requiring visionary leadership for successful outcomes. Biden and Benjamin Netanyahu may belong to this pantheon, as they both believe in the possibility of a two-state solution. However, this paradox lies in their conflicting faiths. Biden is torn between conflicting faiths, and Netanyahu’s decision to systematically bury the Oslo Accord and embark on a Jewish theocracy in what was once Israel. Greater Israel is here to stay, and world opinion regards it as an apartheid state.

There is a misconception that Biden is under pressure from American opinion on the conflict in Gaza. However, support for Israel has always been thin in America, and one third of American Jews, especially the youth, don’t even care for the Israel Lobby. The question remains whether a paradigm shift is possible, and whether it is possible for Israel to abandon its past policies and embrace a negotiated settlement of the Palestine problem.

Americans generally have a favorable opinion of Israel, but their problem lies in Israel’s aggressive policies, despite the absence of open media or academic discussion. A defining moment came when Netanyahu taunted President Barack Obama on the Iran nuclear deal by consorting with Congress against the presidency. In recent years, Israel’s image has been tarnished in liberal opinion due to the rise of right-wing forces and racist attitudes among Israeli youth.

There has been a marked erosion of support for Israel within the Democratic Party, but there has been a countervailing rise in support for Israel among Republicans. The Israel Lobby still wields influence, as it traditionally focused on power brokers and worked hard to shore up their support. The elites in the Democratic Party establishment remain deeply committed to relations with Israel, fearing that the Lobby will target them if there are signs of wavering in their support for Israel.

The Israel Lobby consistently gains favor on the Palestinian issue and receives substantial financial backing for Israel without any strings attached. Biden’s promises to Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi are a result of Arab states’ collective security efforts, refusing to legitimize Israel’s genocide or ethnic cleansing roadmap.

Biden’s promises to support a two-state solution to the emerging Greater Israel are hollow, as the Israel Lobby will go to extraordinary lengths to protect it. He knows it will take time before such a vision takes life, and South Africa’s experience will likely lead to bloodshed. Israel will not accept a two-state solution as per the Arab Initiative, which is a balanced matrix of mutual interests with a historical and long-term perspective.

The primary issue in the heart and mind of every person in the Arab Islamic nation is the restoration of legitimate rights in Palestine, Syria, and Lebanon. The high probability is that Israel will hunker down with the help of its Lobby in the US and prefer to be a Pariah in the world community, rather than a two-state solution that demands abandonment of the Zionist state built around Greater Israel. The only game changer could be if Biden is willing to force the US force its will on Israel through coercive means. This requires the courage of conviction and compassion, as Biden’s successful half-century in public life was largely devoted to realpolitik.

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