Israel – Diminishing American power means Israeli leaders have a “small window of opportunity” for an agreement, writes Leon Hadar in the Tel Aviv-based Haaretz.
“The failure to defeat the Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan, the specter of a nuclear Pakistan turning into a failed state, rising concerns about the decline of Iraq into a civil war after the U.S. withdrawal, the growing power of Iran and its regional satellites, the threat that the Arab Spring is posing to regimes that were willing at least to accept the U.S.-backed status-quo and the deadlocked Israel-Palestinian peace process − all these are clear indications that the era of Pax Americana in the Middle East is over.”
Lebanon – “Obama is resoundingly and definitively correct when he says there is no short-cut to a durable peace,” says an editorial in the Beirut-based Daily Star. “But the task isn’t impossible.”
“Popular uprisings have broken out in a number of Arab countries, where people have been paying attention to what Washington has said and done. For the most part, they have been disappointed, and they are certainly going to be disappointed by Obama’s latest stance on the region, a flagrant declaration of bias toward Israel and the kind of “same old” policy that has even less value in a year of dramatic change, the kind of change that Obama himself once promised.”
Saudi Arabia – “Et tu Obama?” is the headline in an editorial from the Jeddah-based Arab News.
“In his own words, Obama sought a “new way forward” with the world’s Muslims, reaffirming the message in his speeches in Ankara and Cairo. The U.S. leader squandered it all at the United Nations on Wednesday, in the ultimate betrayal and sellout of the cause of Middle East peace.”
United Arab Emirates – In a pair of editorials, Abu Dhabi’s National says of the Palestinian statehood bid,
“Nonviolent resistance and appeal to international opinion - which greatly favours the claims of the Palestinian people - pressures Israel in ways that suicide bombers and handshakes on the White House lawn never can."
The second editorial adds,
“The Palestinian Authority could have explained this U.N. bid much better, most importantly to its own people. As Israel arms its security forces and settlers in anticipation of violence, there is a danger that violence during Palestinian protests could undo whatever progress is made at the United Nations.”
Australia/Turkey/Oman – “[B]eing on the wrong side of history is never a comfortable position,” writes Australia’s former foreign minister in an op-ed for Project Syndicate, published by Muscat-based Times of Oman and Istanbul-based Zaman, among other news outlets.
“And that is exactly where the U.S., Israel, and its closest friends –including my own country, Australia - will be if they resist the tide of international sentiment in favour of moving now to recognise Palestinian statehood.”
Jordan/Canada –“[I]t is becoming harder and harder to believe that the United States is capable of negotiating a peace between the parties,” writes member of the Jordanian royal family Prince Hassan bin Talal in the Toronto-based Globe and Mail.
“To anyone on the outside looking in, including those of us who are good friends of America, the disconnect between rhetoric and action can only mean one thing: that the U.S. can’t be relied on to guarantee Palestinian rights as assiduously as it does Israeli rights, and that it lacks the heart and moral conviction to be a sincere and impartial partner for peace.”
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