The Abraham Accords

December 11, 2020 • Volume 30, Issue 44
Will they transform the Middle East?
By Jonathan Broder


Israel's normalization of ties with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Sudan shatters the status quo in which Arab states withheld recognition of Israel until it allowed creation of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza. The U.S.-brokered agreement is excellent news for the signatories. Security cooperation and coordination regarding Iran — a country that all the parties to the agreements view as a threat — will increase. And officials anticipate around $500 million in deals and investments annually through the marriage of Gulf Arab petrodollars and Israel's scientific and technological expertise. But the deals leave the Palestinians in the cold, with few options. They are hoping for more sympathetic treatment from the incoming Biden administration. But President-elect Joe Biden first must tackle America's COVID-19 and economic crises before investing the time and political capital needed to revive the Middle East peace process. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries are waiting to see how the normalization agreements function before signing on.

Photo of Vice President Pence, President Trump and adviser Jared Kushner announcing an agreement between Israel and Bahrain. (Getty Images/Anna Moneymaker)
President Trump announces an agreement between Israel and Bahrain to establish diplomatic relations on Sept. 11, 2020. Trump made the announcement in the Oval Office, flanked by Vice President Mike Pence (left) and Trump's son-in-law and Middle East adviser, Jared Kushner. (Getty Images/Anna Moneymaker)
ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Israel, Palestine, and Middle East Peace
Dec. 11, 2020  The Abraham Accords
Apr. 13, 2018  The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Mar. 09, 2018  Saudi Arabia's Uncertain Future
Jun. 21, 2013  Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
May 2009  Middle East Peace Prospects
Oct. 27, 2006  Middle East Tensions Updated
Jan. 21, 2005  Middle East Peace
Aug. 30, 2002  Prospects for Mideast Peace
Apr. 06, 2001  Middle East Conflict
Mar. 06, 1998  Israel At 50
Aug. 30, 1991  The Palestinians
Oct. 19, 1990  The Elusive Search for Arab Unity
Feb. 24, 1989  Egypt's Strategic Mideast Role
Apr. 15, 1988  Israel's 40-Year Quandary
Mar. 02, 1984  American Involvement in Lebanon
Nov. 12, 1982  Reagan's Mideast Peace Initiative
Apr. 23, 1982  Egypt After Sadat
Jan. 04, 1980  Divided Lebanon
Jul. 20, 1979  West Bank Negotiations
Dec. 01, 1978  Middle East Transition
Jan. 13, 1978  Saudi Arabia's Backstage Diplomacy
Oct. 29, 1976  Arab Disunity
May 16, 1975  Middle East Diplomacy
Sep. 13, 1974  Palestinian Question
Dec. 12, 1973  Middle East Reappraisal
Apr. 25, 1973  Israeli Society After 25 Years
Aug. 19, 1970  American Policy in the Middle East
Apr. 25, 1969  Arab Guerrillas
Aug. 02, 1967  Israeli Prospects
Jul. 06, 1966  Middle East Enmities
Apr. 14, 1965  Relations with Nasser
Aug. 17, 1960  Arab-Israeli Deadlock
May 27, 1959  Middle East Instability
Jun. 04, 1958  Nasser and Arab Unity
Oct. 02, 1957  Soviet Threat in Middle East
Sep. 18, 1956  Suez Dispute and Strategic Waterways
May 09, 1956  Middle East Commitments
Apr. 13, 1955  Middle East Conflicts
Mar. 31, 1954  Security in the Mideast
Oct. 23, 1952  Israel and the Arab States
Jan. 30, 1952  Egyptian Crisis and Middle East Defense
Mar. 17, 1948  Palestine Crisis
Feb. 18, 1946  Soviet Russia and the Middle East
Alliances and Security Agreements
Arms Control and Disarmament
Congress Actions
Diplomacy and Diplomats
Exports and Imports
Global Issues
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International Law and Agreements
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Lobbying and Special Interests
Middle East Conflicts
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Powers and History of the Presidency
Regional Political Affairs: Middle East and South Asia
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Travel and Tourism
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