Ron Cantor — February 6, 2021 —
President Joe Biden is quickly revealing his Middle East strategy and it doesn’t look good for Israel.
First, he called Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas in one of his first contacts as president and has yet to call Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Then the State Department announced it would restore diplomatic relations with the Palestinian Authority and possibly reopen the PLO office in Washington D.C. And the U.S. will restore U.S. funding for the PA which was withheld under the Taylor Force Act that prohibits murdering paying Palestinian terrorist salaries.
Nikki Haley, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, accused Biden of pursuing dangerous strategies, “Obama 2.0,” she said. Perhaps most troubling to Israel, is his policies on Iran. “You look at the fact that they’re looking at getting back into the Iran deal … that means you’re going to lift all the sanctions that we put on Iran,” Haley said. Trump imposed heavy sanctions on Iran in order to limit their nuclear production and put pressure on its terrorist activity in the region. “The Biden administration is snubbing our friends like Israel, but they’re cozying up to enemies like Iran,” she said on Fox News. “Biden’s been in office for two weeks now, he has yet to call the Israeli prime minister, one of our closest allies. I just don’t understand the logic.The sanctions “weakened their economy so much that they’ve got the Iranian people demonstrating in the street against the regime,” she said. “That’s what we wanted.”
“You’re actually hurting our friends, Israel and the Arab countries, that worked with us on getting these sanctions back on Iran, that worked with us on trying to hold back terrorism,” she said.
U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price said on Tuesday, America would restore financial aid “very quickly” to the Palestinians. He criticized the former administration’s policies which did not lead to political progress or “obtain concessions from the Palestinian leadership.”
Former President Donald Trump had a decidedly pro-Israel approach but the new administration appears to be shifting back to the time under former President Barack Obama, when Biden was vice president.
“This is exactly the type of swift action the administration needs to take to restore American credibility as a diplomatic mediator between Israelis and Palestinians,” Jeremy Ben-Ami, the president of J Street, a left wing “anti-Israel” Israel group, said. “Undoing the terrible damage done by the Trump administration starts with re-establishing a working relationship with the Palestinian leadership and people.”
Trump did the unthinkable in punishing Palestinians for budgeting over 300 million dollars a year to family of terrorist. Biden is seeking to restore the suspended aid.