Whatever becomes of the empty deals Serbia and Kosovo signed with the Trump administration (and they are falling apart quickly), involving Israel was aimed at pleasing Trump’s evangelical Christian base. Israel itself may not even have had a deep involvement with this move, but it still demonstrates something about Israel’s strategy. Some call it Israel’s “outside-in” strategy, the idea being that Israel is reversing long-held ideas about needing to make peace with the Palestinians in order to make peace with the Arab world and get the various things it wants from other countries around the world.
But Israel’s strategy is very different. It is proving that it can have its cake and eat it too. That is, Benjamin Netanyahu believes Israel can have normal relations with much of the Arab world, in the open, and gain what it wants from Europe and other countries without ever relinquishing its hold over the West Bank. And the world is proving Netanyahu correct. I explore this and other questions in my latest piece for the New Arab.