All about ideas…

Does KSA King Abdullah II read Tom Friedman?

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If he does, then he will see the Friedman’s latest column in the Times in which Friedman recommends a revised Saudi 5-State peace plan for Israel-Palestine.

The virtues of this five-state solution — Palestine, Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Saudi Arabia — are numerous: Egypt and Jordan, the Arab states that have peace treaties with Israel, would act as transition guarantors that any Israeli withdrawal would not leave a security vacuum in the West Bank, Gaza or Arab Jerusalem that could threaten Israel. Israel would have time for a phased withdrawal of its settlements, and Palestinians would have the chance to do nation-building in an orderly manner. This would be an Arab solution that would put a stop to Iran’s attempts to Persianize the Palestinian issue.

President Obama, too much has been broken to go straight back to the two-state solution. It would be like trying to build a house with bricks but no cement. There’s no trust and no framework to build it. Israelis and Palestinians need the kind of cement that only Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan can provide. It would give Israelis security and Palestinians a clear pathway to an independent state.

Variations on this plan are being proposed by many knowledgeable foreign affairs people. This proposal or one similar to it is probably the only chance to settle the continuing conflict in this region. But will Israel go along with it? That’s a big a problem as bringing Hamas in line.


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