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22 June, 2024
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Biden's mission in the Middle East

''No US president has succeeded in solving the problem in the Middle East and now so much blood has been spilled that it is difficult to find a solution''

Alexis Papachelas

Alexis Papachelas

US President Joe Biden may be advanced in age, and there are ongoing concerns within his team regarding the risks of a literal stumble that could potentially harm his image. Nevertheless, it is indisputable that he handles foreign policy matters with prudence and a considerable degree of skill. Whether he personally makes decisions or relies on his close-knit team is of minor consequence. As the president, he appoints his team and bears responsibility for their actions.

In the case of Israel, Biden is striving to strike a delicate balance. On one hand, he is scheduled to travel to Israel this Wednesday for a visit laden with profound symbolism and associated risks. Additionally, he is extending extensive military support, sharing intelligence and deploying two aircraft carriers to the region, creating a security shield in the event of a potential second front emerging in this conflict. On the other hand, both privately and publicly, he is cautioning Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that a ground invasion of Gaza could have catastrophic consequences for Israeli interests and result in a bloody and strategic deadlock.

At the same time, he is opening channels of communication with Iran to ensure that there are no “misunderstandings.” Most analysts believe that when the military operation in Gaza is over, Biden will put some formula back on the table for the creation of a Palestinian state. He will have the credibility to do so as he will have given all possible support to Israel. He probably predicts that Netanyahu will have suffered massive political damage and won’t even be prime minister when the time comes for the deal.

No US president has succeeded in solving the problem in the Middle East and now so much blood has been spilled that it is difficult to find a solution, especially when the Israeli settlements make it impossible to create a geographically unified Palestinian state.

In Ukraine too, Biden proved that experience counts in foreign policy. He brought Europe again closer to the US, ensured the enlargement of NATO and increased the sales of American weapons and natural gas to European countries. From the point of view of American interests, he achieved a lot. Whether he will be able to bring President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to the final negotiating table, without entirely maximalist demands, remains to be seen in the coming months.

But much will be decided in the coming days. Biden’s trip to Israel and Jordan will place his personal prestige at stake, perhaps even his reputation. His mission at a time when an unprecedented humanitarian drama is unfolding in Gaza and in Israel the overwhelming majority demands the complete eradication of Hamas, at any cost, is unimaginably difficult.

Everyone believes that the world, and especially the Middle East, has passed into the post-American era. Many conclusions will be drawn all over the planet from the result of this visit

Cyprus  |  Israel  |  Gaza  |  war

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