Israel plays ‘quid pro quo’ game with Arab countries
Published : Friday, 18 December, 2020 at 12:00 AM Count : 258
Assuming my readers to be knowledgeable enough, it is not necessary to explain the Latin phrase - favour for a favour according to the English translation of quid pro quo. However, the series of diplomatic recognition extended to Israel by a number of Arab countries in the recent past - merit questions - why is it happening? Who are the definitive beneficiaries? And most importantly, why the Arab world is fast being divided into two opposing fractions, especially in terms of establishing diplomatic ties with the illegal establishment of a Zionist state inside an occupied Arab country?
Whatever Arab-centric diplomatic ties Israel have knit so far, the flimsy and fragile attempts, under the banner of so-called 'normalisation of relations' between Palestine and Israel will reach no conclusion.
On the contrary, the spree of diplomatic recognitions will only push aside the Palestinian Cause to oblivion. On this point, favour - for a - favour diplomacy in today's world has mostly been short-lived. But Israel's quid pro quo game with Arab countries to win friends in the Middle East is based on a far more sinister strategic approach to further divide the Islamic World. Foment geopolitical tension while capitalising on the political divide of Islam. Concurrently, the series of discreet diplomatic recognition handed to Israel throws out a burning question pointing Arab Muslim countries.
What is more important, the agony of an illegally occupied Arab Muslim majority nation or to justify its illegal occupation for mere political and short-term economic gains?
Just spot on this point and you will come to realise in the 21st century - political, economic and regional gains have overtaken - the humane and ethical sides of international diplomacy. Be it the plight of the Palestinians, Yemenis or the Rohingyas - regional powers, superpower USA to potential superpowers - all have taken a dramatic shift in their respective foreign policies. The trend is getting even complex under the 'New Normal' triggered by the pandemic.
However, coming back to my point, the controversial diplomatic route - the four Muslim majority states have followed so far - UAE, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco- have also largely engaged Iran as an imaginative arch rival in the Arab and Muslim world. However, Iran -Saudi overt and covert proxy wars, waged against one another to gain regional supremacy is an old story today.
The fact here, given Israel's superior military, technological and intellectual prowess over most Arab states, Israel does not seek active support of these four Arab countries to combat Iran. On the flipside, the recognitions are also important for Israel to inactivate and silent as many Arab countries possible in case a large scale military conflict breaks out with Iran. Additionally, it is also important to bag as many Arab countries possible before Mr Trump leaves office in January. I wouldn't be surprised to see more Arab countries recognising Israel before January 20.
But it's rather remarkable to follow how a handful of Arab countries have joined with Israel, wooing others to follow suit. The short term Zionist strategy here may well be to counter and weaken Iran's influence in the Middle East with US and Saudi support.
But the long term strategies worry me the most. The first is to crush the Palestinian struggle for freedom while turning Palestinians in their homeland as a minority. Second is to break, divide and divert the Arab League and OIC and their organisational goals into a different direction. Third is quite alarming, rule over Arab countries by turning them as rivals, squeeze whatever brotherhood and fraternity is left based on religious and ethno linguistic bonding.
The unholy nexus between Israel and some of today's Arab countries is fast changing the politicalscape of the Middle East. At a broader scale, these diplomatic recognitions to Israel are also impacting faraway Muslim majority countries. Saudi Arabia has reportedly pressured Pakistan to recognise Israel with a proxy diplomatic approach. Bangladesh too, can be placed under pressure for all its potentials.
To cut a long story short, with the unseen future at hand a number of Muslim countries have now indulged in a dangerous quid pro quo game empowering Israel to emerge as a valid state in the global map. And if Israel somehow manages to succeed, it will come at the dangerous cost by the international community's compromising, perhaps sacrificing of the Palestinian Cause.
With Mr. Biden assuming office in January, many have opined that US-Israel relations would be re-defined. How can one be so sure in the face of a fast changing shrewd geopolitical gains and losses, jointly calculated by the US-Israel-Saudi trio? What if Mr. Biden walks the Trump-Road, aiding Israel in achieving its diplomatic ambition by following a different modality?
Flirting with Tel Aviv is that of flirting with the devil, though the fruit it offers is juicy and delicious, but no point taking a bite at it at the cost of going to hell. Sadly, much of the Arab Muslim world is missing out on it.
The writer is assistant editor,
The Daily Observer