Will the Abraham Accords bring “Peace to the Middle East”?
— 3 minute read — By Daisy Olyett
“Peace in the Middle East” – this is a phrase most of us have come to know, yet have never expected to come into fruition. However, upon the signing of the Abraham Accords on 15th September, many are under the illusion that peace has manifested itself in this war-torn part of the world. This unfortunately is not the case. Whilst these new sets of agreements provide a variety of benefits for not just Israel and the U.A.E., but also the U.S. and Bahrain, they provide a host of political landmines for Palestinians and Iranians.
In simple terms, the Abraham Accords are a set of agreements proposed by the American Government to relieve tensions between Israel and the U.A.E. whilst discouraging Iran from starting conflicts with its neighbours. By encouraging trade between the U.A.E., Israel, and also Bahrain, the Persian Gulf opens up to Israeli holidaymakers and provides Israel with a military ally just across the gulf from Iran.
Christian-majority countries including the U.S. and UK are avid supporters of the Abraham Accords as they offer what may seem to be a quick solution to rising pressures surrounding cultural clashes in the Middle East. For example, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed desires to promote Israeli sovereignty in West Bank (a landlocked territory bordered by Israel to the North, West and South and Jordan to the East): such an act would provoke clashes between Israel and Palestinians (Arabs living in modern day Israel and Jordan who claim West Bank and the Gaza Strip as their ancestral home). The Abraham Accords would see a temporary postponement to any annexation of territory by Israel including West Bank and East Jerusalem; although this may appear to be a helping hand to Palestinians, their ability to barter with Israel for independence was stripped from them by the U.S. in the form of this new agreement.
From a political perspective, the Abraham Accords could not have come at a better time for Netanyahu. As his trial for corruption looms and COVID cases soar across Israel, Netanyahu seized the opportunity to present the Israeli government as a global power with the U.A.E. on one arm and the U.S. on the other. Israel could fulfil her dream of being a real part of the Middle East rather than a sore thumb sticking out of it, and Trump could gain all the glory for it. Through the Abraham Accords, Trump has labelled himself as an international “peacemaker” whilst simultaneously bringing the prospect of nuclear conflict closer to reality.
More alarmingly, the U.A.E. benefits the most in a material sense from these agreements with the promise of receiving a F-35 Stealth Fighter and an EA-186 Growler electronic warfare aircraft from the U.S. upon signing the terms of agreement. Such weaponry has been strategically placed in the U.A.E. to deter any acts of war carried out by Iranian leader Hassan Rouhain against their Middle Eastern neighbours or the U.S.
Nearly every aspect of the Abraham Accords is designed to isolate Iran in the Middle East, as Rouhain begins to demand reparations from the U.S. for acts of terrorism and uranium purification (a stage in the process of manufacturing nuclear weapons) in the country starts to increase. To the U.S., Israel and the U.A.E. the Abraham Accords solve their strategic issues with Iran without having to engage in lengthy peace talks.
How ironic it seems that “Peace in the Middle East” is something we all want, yet Western leaders and leaders in the Middle East alike are too proud to seek it.