Bahrain foreign minister announcing peace with Israel EPA-EFE/RONEN ZVULUN/POOL
Middle East

Why Did Bahrain Make Peace With Israel?

Hint: It wasn’t actually to aid the Palestinian cause


Bahrain’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdul Latif Al-Zayani (pictured), said of his nation’s new peace deal with Israel that it represented “a step to restore the rights of the Palestinian people and work to embody the Arab Initiative.”

The United Arab Emirates similarly summarized the motivation behind their own normalization agreement with Israel back on August 13. But what the Bahraini foreign minister said was outright rejected by the Palestinian leadership, which has characterized normalization between Israel and the Kingdom of Bahrain as “a betrayal of Jerusalem, Al-Aqsa and the Palestinian cause.”

If the Palestinians, who are the supposed primary stakeholders in these deals, so firmly reject these declared moves on their behalf, then we must ask what are the true motives behind Bahrain publicly cozying up to Israel. Because we must assume that Manama knew full well the Palestinian reaction beforehand. So there must have been other reasons to take such a dramatic step.

In fact, there were three.


1. American pressure

Middle East observers agree that the main drive force behind Bahrain’s move to normalize...


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