Questions for the US ambassador to Israel

Will the U.S. follow its own policy of fostering Palestinian recognition of Israel?

U.S. Ambassador to Israel Thomas Nides in his office, October 2022. Credit: David Azagury/U.S. Embassy Jerusalem.
U.S. Ambassador to Israel Thomas Nides in his office, October 2022. Credit: David Azagury/U.S. Embassy Jerusalem.
David Bedein
David Bedein
David Bedein is director of the Nahum Bedein Center for Near East Policy Research.

It is widely assumed that U.S. Middle East policy seeks to foster mutual recognition between Israel and a nascent Palestinian entity.

That is not what we see in U.S. policy today.

The Palestinian Authority’s Palestinian Security Forces (PSF), trained by the U.S. to fight Arab terrorists, instead carry out daily attacks against Jews. The PSF is dominated by the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, designated a foreign terrorist organization (FTO) by the U.S. government.

The P.A. has enacted unprecedented legislation that provides a salary for life to anyone who murders a Jew.

I asked outgoing U.S. Ambassador Thomas Nides if the U.S. government will demand the repeal of this law, which functions as an incentive to kill Jews. The answer: No.

The P.A. Education Ministry teaches a curriculum that indoctrinates children to make war on the Jews.

I asked Nides if the U.S. will demand that that the P.A. drop its war curriculum. The answer: No.

I asked Nides if the U.S. will ask the P.A. to withdraw a textbook from 2018, republished in 2023, that glorifies Dalal al-Mughrabi, who murdered 35 Jews, including 12 children, as a role model for the next generation. The answer: No.

UNRWA allocates $1.6 billion to service 6.7 million descendants of Arab refugees in 59 “temporary” refugee camps, while inculcating the idea of a “right of return” to villages that existed in Israel before 1948.

I asked Nides if the U.S. government favors a change in policy towards UNRWA. The answer: No

Meanwhile, P.A. materials used by UNRWA include 120 new maps that replace all Jewish cities—on both sides of the 1967 lines—with Arabic names, a new form of “Judenrein.” 

The U.S. government could ask UNRWA to use standard maps in schools—run under the auspices of the U.N.—that depict the geographic details of every U.N. member state, including Israel.

I asked Nides if the U.S. will make this request. The answer: No.

These issues should be the basis of any Middle East policy questions posed to Congress.

The opinions and facts presented in this article are those of the author, and neither JNS nor its partners assume any responsibility for them.
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