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Hey, Bibi: Give back Trump's favor



On Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu received a fifth term as Israeli Prime Minister. As a master of coalition building and political compromise, Netanyahu has earned a significant chapter in Israel's history.

However, no one should forget that President Trump played an important role in Netanyahu's victory. Right on time Trump brought Netanyahu important political victories that he could sell at home. These include the relocation of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Trump's support for Israel's claim to sovereignty over the Golan Heights, his insistence on a more open support for Israeli interests, and his generous reinforcement of US aid to the Israeli military.

In Trump, Israel has found its biggest presidential friend since Harry S. Truman. And so we fully understand why Netanyahu's supporters waved cheerfully with Trump flags at the prime minister's election night party.

Now is the time for Netanyahu to prove himself an ally of Trump, especially when it comes to curb China's malevolent global influence and promote Trump's peace plan for the Middle East.

Netanyahu was a good friend of America, most recently with the bold intelligence operations he has allowed against groups like the Islamic State and hard-liner elements in Iran. He helped close loopholes in US intelligence and occasionally fulfilled US security interests far more than Israeli ones. The friendship with Netanyahu has saved the lives of Americans and their allies.

His government has also exchanged valuable information about the policies and intrigues of regional governments. This informs about a more effective US foreign policy.

Nevertheless, Trump needs Netanyahu's help with China and the peace process.

First of all, Netanyahu has to feel a little less comfortable with Beijing. Israel's technology sector is a crown jewel in its economy, making it a key source of export value and attractiveness for foreign investment. However, China's growing presence in Israel is extremely problematic for US national security. China has demonstrably gained access to civilian technology and used it to develop its own military capabilities. This is a particular problem with China's deployment of advanced weapon platforms such as the Carrier Killer Ballistic Missile Force and the next generation Blue Water Fleet Fleet.

Beijing's Potential Access to US Military Capacity Sold to Israel, like the F-35 Strike Fighter program, could one day prove fatal. Trump should urge Netanyahu to restrict China's access to value-added technologies capable of dual-use manipulation and provide safeguards for China's Haifa port construction.

Regarding Trump's Long Brain Plan to Resolve the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict An agreement with reasonable concessions on all sides would eliminate a driver of Islamist extremist propaganda, terrorist recruitment, and resentment in the Muslim world. While the role of the conflict in promoting Islamic terrorism is often exaggerated ̵

1; issues of poverty, political failure and ideologically extreme education are much more important – the conflict is crucial.

Of course, we do not have to fool ourselves: Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and other groups in Gaza are likely to oppose the agreement under all circumstances. Trump should be willing to punish her if she goes against his proposal. Nevertheless, Netanyahu trumps it and blames itself for being open to any proposed peace plan and willingness to make concessions under the right circumstances. These circumstances may include a commitment by the Sunni Arab monarchies and Egypt to bring the Palestinians to the table in good faith. For example, we do not expect Netanyahu to risk his government unilaterally.

Netanyahu's willingness to act would send an important signal to future US authorities. Former President Barack Obama has set himself the goal of creating "daylight" between the US and Israel so that the US can be seen as a more honest broker among the Arabs. Obama's hostility to Israel prompted Netanyahu to interfere, which in turn put the Palestinians under pressure to engage. Trump, on the other hand, has shown himself to be a great friend of Netanyahu. By tackling the Trump proposal in earnest, Netanyahu will show that future US presidents can make more progress through closer ties and more trust between the US and Israel.

And for the time being, a serious commitment will put the Palestinians and the Arab states under pressure to reach an agreement. If they reject a reasonable offer, they have to swallow the blame.


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