Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince of oil-rich Saudi Arabia, has been rapidly instituting big changes to one of the world’s most repressive countries. He’s still acting dictatorially, but change that could affect the whole region is occurring.
He just said this to The Atlantic in an interview: “I believe that each people, anywhere, has a right to live in their peaceful nation. I believe the Palestinians and the Israelis have the right to have their own land.”
The Atlantic noted the significance: “According to former U.S. peace negotiator Dennis Ross, moderate Arab leaders have spoken of the reality of Israel’s existence, but acknowledgment of any sort of ‘right’ to Jewish ancestral land has been a red line no leader has crossed until now.”
Needless to say, I expect social justice jihadis to protest bin Salman at every opportunity. After all, they’ve protested Gal Gadot for simply being a Israeli who landed a big movie role.
While the Palestinians have shown no interest in living side by side with the Jewish State, and the prince believes the Palestinians are a distinct people and deserving of autonomy, his acknowledgement that Israel has a right to exist will have ripple effects.
Who knows what form those will take.
Bin Salman has enlarged the target on his back, but other Islamic nations will weigh their interests vis a vis Israel, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and the United States, and act accordingly.
Perhaps his statement will open a new period of less mayhem. Perhaps other developments favorable to the United States will soon occur.
Don’t believe the ridiculous notion that the world’s most oppressive region has turned the corner towards peace. But bin Salman’s actions are certainly a positive development for us and our allies.