President Obama’s critical meeting with Binyamin Netanyahu next week has become the acid test for the Administration’s commitment to peace in the Middle East, King Abdullah of Jordan said yesterday.
The monarch does not conceal his feelings about the Israeli leader. He described their last encounter – 10 years ago when he had just come to the throne – as the “least pleasant” of his reign. But he, and President Mubarak of Egypt, are expected to meet the Israeli leader before his trip to Washington, where the future course of the region could be decided.
The King said that he was prepared to believe what Israelis have told him — that a right-wing Government in Israel is better able to deliver peace than the Left.
“All eyes will be looking to Washington,” he said. “If there are no clear signals and no clear directives to all of us, there will be a feeling that this is just another American Government that is going to let us all down.”
If Israel procrastinated on a two-state solution, or if there was no clear American vision on what should happen this year, the “tremendous credibility” that Mr Obama had built up in the Arab world would evaporate overnight.