1 thought on “The new Jerusalem – Abu Dis”

  1. Let us assume that the Aronson report is accurate, which it may well be. Based on what we have seen from them to date, Jared Kushner and MBS seem to me to be perfectly capable of cooking up something along these lines. Even if Abbas could be bought off (and I think it is correct that the alleged offer from MBS is something he could neither accept nor refuse), does anyone seriously think Hamas would accept such a deal, let alone more extreme groups? Seemingly sold out by the Saudis, Hamas would undoubtedly be pushed even closer to Iran…which, logically, should be exactly what Israel, concerned at the prospect of Iranian-backed militias on three fronts (ie Hamas plus Hizbollah and a possible presence on the Syrian side of Golan), would not want to see. This leaves me worrying that, as Aronson intimates, the hope in Riyadh and in Tel Aviv too is that Tehran and/or one of its proxies would act in such a way as to spur the US into some sort of military strike against Iran. As I have written elsewhere, I think this is a fatter tail risk for at least the first half of 2018 than is a US military strike against North Korea. But, although the potential consequences of US military action against Iran may be less dire than would be the case with North Korea (at which even Stephen Bannon has balked!), they could still be extremely serious indeed. After all, the regime in Tehran could hardly just take it on the chin without undermining its bid for leadership of the Muslim world and its domestic standing. It doesn’t even take a worst case scenario to envisage heavy loss of life in the region and a serious hit to the global economy as oil spikes back to levels not seen since at least July 2014 and maybe even July 2008.

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