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Democrats Continue to Obstruct Saudi-Israel Deal

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Saudi Arabia and Israel continue to inch towards normalized ties. At the United Nations, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu proclaimed that Saudi Arabia and Israel are “at the cusp” of normalizing relations. In recent weeks, two Israeli ministers have visited Riyadh: the first was the Israeli tourism minister to attend a United Nations World Tourism Organization conference, while the second was the Israeli Communications Minister attending the Universal Postal Union (UPU) conference.

Prospects of a Saudi-Israel deal continue to show value against checking the threat of Iran and her allies. The recent reactions of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei calling Muslim countries that normalize relations with Israel equivalent to “betting on a losing horse” shows that Iran is indeed scared.

But according to a recent report, both Saudi and Israeli officials have recognized that while they can bridge other issues, the one that will destroy the talks is the Biden administration’s continued obsession with Palestinian nationhood.

And the Biden administration continues to steamroll down that path. President Biden said at UN that his administration continues “to work tirelessly to support a just and lasting peace between…the Israelis and Palestinians — two states for two people.” And twenty Senate Democrats are pressuring the Biden administration to pre-condition any Saudi deal with significant advancement towards a two state solution.

The Saudi position on a Palestinian state remains open and pragmatic. On the surface, it appears otherwise, as the Saudi Foreign minister stated that the country’s goal was to have a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital. However, Saudi Crown prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS) was more ambiguous in a recent interview. While MbS emphasized that “the Palestinian issue is very important” and “we need to solve that part,” he did not call for statehood, instead emphasizing the need to “ease the life of the Palestinians.” This echoes recent reports in the Israeli press that Saudi Arabia is indeed prepared to forgo Palestinian statehood, and that Saudi Arabia would continue to negotiate with Israel and the United States if the Palestinian Authority would refuse to.

So what comes next? With continued focus on Palestinian statehood, the ever-elusive normalization agreement between Israel and Saudi Arabia remains the Biden Administration’s win to lose.

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Israel

Israeli Hostages Suffered Daily Abuse Under Hamas Captors, Says Treating Physician

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The four Israeli hostages rescued by Israeli security personnel on Saturday endured severe daily abuse during their captivity by Hamas terrorists, according to the physician overseeing their post-captivity treatment. Dr. Itai Pessach of the Sheba Medical Center in Ramat Gan provided these insights in an interview with CNN’s Paula Hancocks on Monday, as reported by Foreign Desk News.

The hostages, identified as Noa Argamani (26), Almog Meir Jan (21), Andrey Kozlov (27), and Shlomi Ziv (41), were abducted during the Supernova music festival amid the October 7 rampage in southern Israel. They spent eight harrowing months confined in Nuseirat.

Dr. Pessach described their experience as “a harsh, harsh experience, with a lot of abuse, almost every day.” Despite appearing in good condition on local media, he noted that the hostages suffered significant physical and psychological impacts from their ordeal.

Dr. Pessach highlighted several detrimental effects on the hostages’ health:
– Psychological Stress: Prolonged mental trauma from daily abuse.
– Physical Abuse: Regular physical mistreatment by their captors.
– Insufficient Diets: Malnutrition from inadequate food supplies.
– Medical Neglect: Lack of necessary medical care.
– Limited Personal Movement: Confinement with little freedom to move.
– Lack of Sunlight: Deprivation of natural light, affecting their physical and mental well-being.

These factors collectively “left a significant mark on their health,” according to Dr. Pessach.

Dr. Pessach has experience treating other hostages released during negotiated ceasefire agreements with Gaza-based jihadists. The harrowing accounts of the recently freed Israeli hostages emphasizes the brutal conditions imposed by their Hamas captors.

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