US To Offer Saudi Arabia A Major Treaty With One Big Catch

( – The Israel-Hamas war has been ongoing for more than 8 months now, with no end in sight. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged not to stop until he eradicates the militant group. Both sides have failed to come to a ceasefire agreement, despite other nations and the United Nations trying to negotiate on their behalf. Now, the US is trying a new approach: a long-shot deal that would see it helping defend Saudi Arabia.

On Sunday, June 9, The Wall Street Journal reported that the Biden Administration is close to finalizing a treaty with the Gulf nation. In exchange, it’s trying to establish formal diplomatic ties between Israel and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia’s capital city. For this to occur though, two things have to happen: Israel has to agree to end the war and commit to a two-state solution, that would see Palestine gain statehood.

The US is hoping to entice Israel to act by presenting an opportunity it has long sought after. Establishing diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia would open the doors for Israel, particularly in gaining greater acceptance in the Muslim and Arab worlds.

However, with Israel’s reluctance to agree to any type of ceasefire agreement and Netanyahu’s determination to see Hamas’ end, the US will likely have its hands full trying to encourage the Jewish state to take the deal. There’s also the fact that Israel’s government and most of its population staunchly oppose a two-state solution.

In exchange, the deal will include a US-Saudi security alliance. In broader terms, the US is expected to help the country develop a civilian nuclear program. It would also make the country the only Arab state to hold a formal defense treaty.

The move is in direct opposition to what President Joe Biden promised when he was on the campaign trail. He originally said he would treat the Gulf nation as a pariah and hold it responsible for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was assassinated in 2018 in Türkiye, his body dismembered and disposed of. Saudi Arabia is also well-known for its suppression of dissent and if the deal goes through, it would be “the first time it concluded such an agreement with an authoritarian country,” according to former US peace negotiator Aaron David Miller.

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