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Cornell scholar: Biden should bypass Bibi, appeal directly to Israelis

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Adam Allington

Israel’s reported plans to establish a 1km-wide buffer zone around the Gaza Strip has been met with criticism from U.S. and international experts.

Uriel Abulof

Visiting professor in the Department of Government, College of Arts and Sciences

Uriel Abulof is a visiting professor in Cornell University’s government department and a professor of politics at Tel-Aviv University. Abulof says Biden’s previous offer of security guarantees for Israel would be more effective than destroying buildings and property to create a buffer.

Abulof says:

“Biden offered a ‘dream deal’ to Israel: vast security guarantees, financial aid and regional peace, including with KSA, for a far-away horizon of a demilitarized Palestine. In fact, all its elements are in Israel’s best interest.

“But, Biden’s approach to the Gaza crisis has reached an impasse – Bibi Netanyahu. Netanyahu’s primary aim is to stay in power, not Israel’s security. Biden needs a bold move: to directly address Israelis.

“Yes, Israelis want to see Hamas gone (for good reasons; there can be no peace with Hamas in power). Yes, Israelis do not trust the Palestinian Authority, neither do most Palestinians. But most Israelis know a dream deal when they see one. A recent poll indicates that 51% of Israelis favor Biden’s policy, less than a third oppose it. Bibi turned Israeli leaders into cowards but has not entirely subdued the Israeli spirit. Biden can, and should, turn to it.”

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