Former US ambassador Charles W. Freeman Jr. has said “American and Zionist strategic interests are no longer congruent,” and that there is no interest in the United States in a war with Iran on Tel Aviv’s behalf.
Freeman made the remarks in a recent interview with online publication The Cradle. He is a former United States diplomat who served on behalf of the US Foreign Service and State Department in Saudi Arabia, India, Thailand, and China. He is fluent in Arabic and Mandarin. He acted as former US President Richard Nixon’s main interpreter during his historic 1972 trip to China.
Commenting on Israel’s current predicament and its increasingly knee-jerk aggression against regional states, Freeman said, “There is growing disillusionment with Israel among American Jews and other former knee-jerk supporters of the Zionist state. American and Israeli values diverged long ago. American and Zionist strategic interests are no longer congruent. There is no interest in the United States in a war with Iran, which Israel keeps plumping for.”
“I do not believe that the Biden administration, despite its strong residual identification with Zionism, will allow itself to be dragged into the low-intensity conflict between Israel and Iran,” he stated.
‘Abraham accords are a diversion, not a path to peace’
The analyst said, “Israel has essentially exhausted its military options. It can do more of the same but more of the same will not bring it peace. Only a reconciliation with the Palestinians and Israel’s Arab neighbors can do that.”
“In this context, it must be said, the so-called Abraham accords are a diversion, not a path to peace. Despite the opposition of Israel’s Arab partners to Iran, they do not wish to be caught in the crossfire of a war between Israel and Iran,” he added.
The Abraham Accords are a joint statement between Israel, the United Arab Emirates, and the United States reached on August 13, 2020. Subsequently, the term was used to refer collectively to agreements between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain.
When asked whether there are genuine prospects for normalization of ties between Arab states and Israel, Freeman said, “Israel’s blatant cruelty to its captive Arab populations makes any relationship with it beyond that dictated by raison d’état deeply unpopular and sets a natural limit to cooperation with it.”
‘Saudis will suffer humiliation in Yemen and withdraw’
Commenting on the Saudi/US/UAE-led war on Yemen, the analyst said, “Saudi Arabia will have to admit defeat and withdraw. The Houthis will not let it retreat without exacting a significant degree of humiliation in return.”
“The only stake the United States has had in Yemen, other than a desire to curb terrorist attacks from its territory, has been to demonstrate continuing support for Saudi Arabia to offset the decline of other aspects for the US–Saudi relationship,” he said.
“But there is no popular support and much opposition in the United States to helping the Saudis continue their misadventures in Yemen. American diplomacy on the war is largely ineffectual. Lacking a relationship with Tehran, the American mediation effort cannot address the contest between it and Saudi Arabia in Yemen. And Washington is not seen as a valuable interlocutor by the Houthis,” he added.
Biden bungled ‘negotiations with Iran’
Elsewhere in his remarks, Freeman said that it seems clear that the Biden administration has “bungled its negotiations with Iran.”
US President Joe Biden has said that rejoining the Iran nuclear agreement is one of his top foreign policy priorities, but he has been refusing to take any step to bring Washington back to compliance with the accord.
After the sixth round of negotiations between Iran and the remaining signatories of the nuclear deal in Vienna, the Biden administration has shown an unusual urge to maintain key elements of sanctions imposed by his predecessor as leverage to pressure the Islamic Republic.
Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi has said his government will support talks that “guarantee national interests”, but will not allow negotiations for the sake of negotiations, as the Biden administration has demanded that Iran’s ballistic missile program and its role in the Middle East be also included in the deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).