ATbar The Iran - Palestine Linkage

The Iran - Palestine Linkage

15/12/2013 | by Karmon, Ely (Dr.)  

During the last years, when finally more political and economic pressure was put on the Teheran regime, the lack of progress in the Israeli - Palestinian peace negotiations was presented by U.S and European leaders as the stumbling block in advancing the undoing of the Iranian nuclear project.

During their first meeting in the White House in May 2009, President Obama said to PM Netanyahu: “[if] there is a linkage between Iran and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process…[to] the extent that we can make peace between the Palestinians and the Israelis – then I actually think it strengthens our hand in the international community in dealing with a potential Iranian threat.”

Netanyahu argued the opposite: "I’ve always said there’s not a policy linkage between pursuing simultaneously peace between Israel and the Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world, and to trying to deal with removing the threat of a nuclear bomb…It would help, obviously, unite a broad front against Iran if we had peace between Israel and the Palestinians. And conversely, if Iran went nuclear, it would threaten the progress towards peace and destabilize the entire area, and threaten existing peace agreement."

In an address to Herzliya Conference in February 2011, Britain's Defense Secretary Liam Fox claimed that Israel could bolster the international campaign to forestall Iran's nuclear program by pursuing peace with the Palestinians. "The United Kingdom is pushing for stronger sanctions to influence Iran, but the importance of the Middle East peace process should not be overlooked"

Asked by The Forward journalist J.J. Goldberg if American officials made the connection between Iran and the Palestinians in his talks with the administration, Prof. Uzi Arad, former Chairman of Israel's National Security Council, replied: "That kind of linkage is done at the highest level… Netanyahu did not have to satisfy the Palestinian positions. He needed to satisfy the Americans. It is not useful to have a stalemate on the Palestinian issue while there’s a stalemate on the [larger regional] process.”

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