Cornell scholar: Biden should bypass Bibi, appeal directly to Israelis

Israel’s reported plans to establish a 1km-wide buffer zone around the Gaza Strip has been met with criticism from U.S. and international experts.

Uriel Abulof is a visiting professor in Cornell University’s government department and a professor of politics at Tel-Aviv University. Abulof says Biden’s previous offer of security guarantees for Israel would be more effective than destroying buildings and property to create a buffer.

Abulof says: “Biden offered a ‘dream deal’ to Israel: vast security guarantees, financial aid and regional peace, including with KSA, for a far-away horizon of a demilitarized Palestine. In fact, all its elements are in Israel’s best interest.

“But, Biden’s approach to the Gaza crisis has reached an impasse – Bibi Netanyahu. Netanyahu’s primary aim is to stay in power, not Israel’s security. Biden needs a bold move: to directly address Israelis.

“Yes, Israelis want to see Hamas gone (for good reasons; there can be no peace with Hamas in power). Yes, Israelis do not trust the Palestinian Authority, neither do most Palestinians. But most Israelis know a dream deal when they see one. A recent poll indicates that 51% of Israelis favor Biden’s policy, less than a third oppose it. Bibi turned Israeli leaders into cowards but has not entirely subdued the Israeli spirit. Biden can, and should, turn to it.”

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White and blue flag of Israel seen at a distance between two buildings
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