“WOE TO THE ARABS!” The UAE-Israel Peace Agreement: Normalizing the Abandonment of Palestine

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Woe to the Arabs because of an evil which has drawn near!" The concealed treachery has now become manifest and your faith sold for riyals and shekels.

Editor’s Note: We are reminded  in the blessed traditions of the Holy Last Messenger (peace and blessing be upon him) of the ultimate destiny of those nations in the middle east who have commandeered for themselves the wealth and power that belongs to the people of their nations for their welfare and advancement, and to aid those in need worldwide. 

 Zainab bint Jahsh, Umm ul Mu’mineen (May Allah be pleased with her) reported: “The Prophet (ﷺ) came to visit me one day frightened and he (ﷺ) said: “La ilaha illallah (There is no true God but Allah). Woe to the Arabs because of an evil which has drawn near! Today an opening of this size has been made in the barrier restraining Ya’juj and Ma’juj (Gog and Magog people).” And he (ﷺ) made a circle with his thumb and index finger. I said, “O Messenger of Allah! Shall we perish while still there will be righteous people among us?” He (ﷺ) replied, “Yes, when wickedness prevails”. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].Reference : Riyad as-Salihin 189: Introduction, Hadith 189

The U.S.-brokered UAE-Israeli  agreement should not have come as a surprise. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been adamant that the Palestinian cause is no longer a priority for Arab and Gulf states. His analysis, unfortunately, is correct.

While the UAE is currently in the spotlight for normalizing relations with Israel in return for postponing the planned annexation of the occupied West Bank, White House Adviser Jared Kushner has stated that all Arab countries will eventually follow suit. Egypt established ties with Israel in 1979 and Jordan’s treaty with Israel was signed in 1994.

Normalization, after all, is just a formality when considering the gradual abandonment of Palestine in the region. Other countries will follow suit because they have nothing to lose. Meanwhile, Palestine is lost in a process that the international community formalised through the 1947 Partition Plan. 

Only days after the so-called “historic flight” of an Israeli aeroplane to the United Arab Emirates, for which Saudi Arabia allowed access to its airspace, the kingdom announced it will be opening its airspace for regular flights to Tel Aviv. Saudi Arabia has been touted as the next country to normalize relations with Israel.

As the international community celebrated the  deal’s postponement of annexation, the two-state compromise and the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 returned to the limelight. For the UN, the UAE-Israeli deal spelled a possible return to diplomatic negotiations through which the institution can once again exert its influence. The Arab Peace Initiative, on the other hand, contains a convenient clause regarding relations with Israel. Unfortunately for the Palestinian people, Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas is promoting both paradigms, neither of which offers Palestinian political rights and autonomy. 

To begin with, the two-state compromise normalizes Israeli colonisation. This has been a major impediment for the Palestinian people since Israel is not called out as a colonial entity and all human rights violations have been divested of the colonial context. The UN accepted Israel’s designation as a country, despite this being built upon stolen land and ethnic cleansing. Such  led to Israel establishing international relations, while Palestinians have become an appendage to their own story.

The Arab Peace Initiative also backs the two-state paradigm. In this way, Arab and Gulf states have aligned themselves with the international community, while carving out their own process of normalizing relations with Israel. A clause which Arab countries no longer feel beholden to stipulates that normalizing relations with Israel can occur in the aftermath of the two-state compromise being implemented. 

Few countries have spoken out in favour of [deal] – Bahrain, Egypt, and Oman have not held back from praising the deal. Bahrain issued a statement announcing it will allow all flights from the UAE to cross its airspace, thus including Israeli flights. In light of the fact that the UAE-Israeli deal gave the international community a much-needed respite from annexation, there is scant scrutiny regarding how countries opposing the  deal have still opted for normalizing Israel through promoting the two-state compromise and the Arab Peace Initiative. 

Speaking out against annexation in terms of the two-state compromise did not deter . To put it succinctly, the two-state compromise caters for normalizing Israel and excluding Palestinians from politics. The PA has not made this distinction and opted to promote Palestine’s marginalisation by speaking out against the UAE-Israeli  deal from the two-state framework. In creating a new narrative over  and singling out the current deal, the PA, alongside the international community, is promoting the more subtle forms of normalizing Israel at the expense of Palestinians.

Meanwhile, the discourse regarding annexation has all but faded from the previous prominence, until  Netanyahu and his allies deem that enough time has passed to implement new legislation that formalizes its colonisation of Palestinian land.

Ramona Wadi/ The Muslim Vibe

IP End Note:

Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:

“O you people! You recite this Verse: ‘O you who believe! Take care of your own selves. If you follow the (right) guidance [and enjoin what is right (Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) and forbid what is wrong (polytheism, disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden)] no hurt can come to you from those who are in error.’ (5:105) But I have heard the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) saying: “When people see an oppressor but do not prevent him from (doing evil), it is likely that Allah will punish them all.”

[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].Reference : Riyad as-Salihin 197: Introduction, Hadith 197