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EDITORIAL ANALYSIS

The Arab world and the elusive two-state solution

The Editorial covers GS paper 2 [Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.]

https://www.iastoppers.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Map-Of-Middle-East.png

Context

The Arab World in a geopolitical sense no longer exists; the Palestine Liberation Organization leadership may have to think of a one-state solution. Recently, the global media proclaimed the newly minted ‘Abraham Accord’ to describe a happening of political significance. This expression sought to trace it to the proper name, Abraham, a patriarchal entity who flourished in the 2nd Millennium BCE, is revered by three religions- Judaism, Christianity and Islam and whose followers today account for a little over 55% of the world’s population.

What is Abraham accord?

  • Recently, Israel, UAE and Bahrain have signed the Abraham Accord. 

  • The Abraham accord is the first Arab- Israeli peace deal in 26 years.

  • The accord seeks to normalize ties between the three countries. 

  • As per the accord, UAE and Bahrain will establish embassies, exchange ambassadors with Israel.

  • Additionally, the two countries will also cooperate and work together with Israel across a range of sectors including tourism, trade, healthcare and security.

  • The agreement is expected to lay a foundation for peace in the region. 

  • It would pave way for many countries like Oman, Sudan etc. to recognize Israel.

What are the benefits of India?

  • Geopolitically, India has welcomed the establishment of diplomatic relations between the UAE and Israel, calling both its strategic partners.

  • Abraham Accord is a step forward in ensuring the Gulf region remains a vital link to maintain India`s energy security.

  • The deal will help India improve defence and security relations with the UAE.

  • India is one of the few countries in the world to have good relations with almost all the countries in the Gulf Region.

  • Since India also has good relations with Iran, India can play a role in the evolution of a regional security framework to ensure long-lasting peace in the region.

  • By choosing the right steps, the deal will help India gain greater influence in the region.

What is the Palestine issue?

  • The one problem on which Arab states professed unity of opinion, but not necessarily of approach, related to Palestine and to the demand for a Palestinian state.

  • After multiple resorts to war and popular uprisings, the tenacity of Israel and its American backers forced the Arab states and their international supporters to accept the Camp David and Oslo Accords and finally the Saudi-sponsored 2002Arab Peace Initiative.

  • It involved a de facto recognition of Israel and the latter accepted it with 14 reservations.

  • The truth behind this Saudi initiative has now been made public. 

  • It is candid and revealing and sheds much light on the Saudi suspicion of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) leadership.

  • The ostensible reason for this is perceived threat from Iran, the spread of regional terrorism and the rise of Islamism.

What is the way forward?

 

  • The deal between the UAE and Israel represented a significant breakthrough in diplomatic relations between the two nations as the USA works to facilitate cooperation between Arab nations and Israel.

  • The PLO leadership has been left high and dry even if not yet disowned by its own people. 

  • The promised Two-state solution is nowhere in sight except for some variants of Bantustans.

  • It would be better to explore a One-state solution even if involves a South Africa-like apartheid that would sooner or later prick the conscience of world opinion and their governments and allow a Palestinian-Mandela to use Gandhian principles to seek justice.

  • So the Arab World in a geopolitical sense no longer exists. 

  • It will retain its focus on linguistic homogeneity and attendant cultural glory.

  • As for the Palestinians and in the event of hard tactical options being forsaken, they might even explore the creation of a Palestinian point of lamentation, hoping that justice would eventually be forthcoming as has been with their Abrahamic cousins.

 

Conclusion

Direct ties between two of the Middle East’s most dynamic societies and advanced economics will transform the region by spurring economic growth. In the evolving scenario, there may be scope for a profitable trilateral synergy, but India cannot take its preponderance as a given. India would have to be on its guard to monitor and even pre-empt any threat to its interests in the Gulf.

 

Source: The Hindu.



 
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