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Middle East report – Dr James M. Dorsey

Azra Hoosen |
15 March 2024 | 14:30 CAT
2 min read

Amidst failed attempts to secure a Gaza ceasefire ahead of Ramadan, innocent civilians in Gaza are left in limbo. The stark disparity between Israel’s and Hamas’ negotiation demands exacerbates tensions, underscoring the urgency for the United States to intervene.

Speaking to Radio Islam, Dr James Dorsey asserted that criticism of Israel has intensified significantly in the past 48 hours.

He emphasized two important events that happened this week. First, the Democratic Senate leader, Chuck Schumer, who is of Jewish origin, made a statement in the Senate in which he criticized Benjamin Netanyahu and his government and called for new elections. Second, the US Intelligence Community’s Annual Threat Assessment stated two significant things. It said that there is only a political solution to this issue, and Israel cannot achieve its war goals.

“What it did say very explicitly was that a low-level Hamas insurgency in Gaza is likely to continue for years to come, and Israel will not be allowed to destroy the tunnel structure underneath Gaza. The sort of simplistic view is that all Biden has to do is pick up the phone and tell Netanyahu the war stops today and it will stop, but the fact of the matter is that it is not that simple,” he said.

Dr. Dorsey highlighted that Israel heavily relies on advanced weaponry like the F35 fighter jet, which is supplied by the United States. However, while Israel does actually have the capability to produce the ammunition it requires, it would be a more expensive and time-consuming process.

According to Dorsey, the United States and President Biden have drawn criticism for choosing a slow and bureaucratic maritime channel for humanitarian aid instead of leveraging American arms supplies to Israel to prompt the immediate opening of border crossings.

Additionally, Dorsey said that the Biden administration is advocating for a comprehensive Middle East deal. He believes that this ambitious plan aims to halt the Gaza conflict and resolve the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. It entails reforming the Palestinian Authority to govern both Gaza and the West Bank, establishing a credible path to Palestinian statehood alongside Israel, and securing Saudi recognition of Israel. However, as per Dorsey, achieving this feat before the November US election seems daunting, despite Saudi Arabia’s interest in a deal under Biden’s presidency.

According to Dorsey, the United States has signalled that Saudi Arabia must limit its technological collaboration with China in exchange for a defence agreement. This adds another layer to the complex negotiations surrounding a Middle East deal

LISTEN to the full interview with Ml Junaid Kharsany and award-winning journalist and scholar, Dr James Dorsey, here.


Dr. James M. Dorsey is an award-winning journalist, scholar, and Senior Fellow at the National University of Singapore’s Middle East Institute. He is the author of ‘The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer’.


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