She said Editorial for the “Times” (Times) British that US President-elect Joe Biden will not be able to undo the policies that his successor, Donald Trump, implemented in many of the main issues in the Middle East, especially Palestine, Iran and Syria.
She added that Biden is likely to adhere to Trump’s policies, continue to increasingly neglect the region, and focus on other challenges.
She indicated that after America is now able to produce all the oil it needs, the Middle East no longer carries the same strategic importance, and it will not be able to insist on any American role in the Syrian impasse or face the growing Russian and Chinese influence in the region.
Trump’s achievements in the region
The newspaper listed what it considered Trump’s achievements in the region, including reaffirming the American commitment to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf’s security by rejecting the Iranian nuclear deal, tightening sanctions on Tehran, and achieving what the Times described as a rare diplomatic victory by opening official relations between Israel and two Gulf states, Bahrain and the UAE.
As a result, the paper says, the Biden administration will face suspicion and hostility from some of the United States’ key allies if it attempts, as the president-elect has suggested, to revive the nuclear deal with Iran.
She indicated that there are two things that make this revival more difficult: first, Iran has already resumed its nuclear program, and the insistence of hard-liners in Tehran, who have the upper hand, that no American administration can be trusted, and secondly, the Arab world’s view of Iran as the biggest threat.
Arabs are less interested in Palestine
On the Palestinian issue, the Times says, Biden will find that the Arab world is no longer focusing on this matter. Rather, he wants an American security commitment to the Gulf, a review of American attempts to disengage from the region, and a display of military force in the Syrian issue. She indicated that he would not be able to move the US embassy from Jerusalem.
The newspaper went on to say that the Biden administration will be exposed to internal pressure to take a tougher stance from Saudi Arabia on its war in Yemen, as well as confront Turkey over its intervention in Libya, its confrontation with Greece, and its decision to purchase the Russian S-400 missile defense system (S-400).
However, a Times editorial says the problems will worsen in the region: Millions of Syrian refugees from neighboring countries are unlikely to return to their devastated country, the low-level civil war in Libya will continue, the economic crisis in Lebanon, famine and disease in Yemen, and the political impasse in Algeria. And the repression in Egypt, while keeping Europe at a cautious distance, and Russia will continue to strive to reap the benefits, and “Islamic extremism”, which is still powerful underground, may begin to rally its followers and start a new campaign of atrocities.