Quincy Institute leader: Middle East peace agreement 'an arms deal'

Trita Parsi, the executive vice president at The Quincy Institute, says the recent diplomatic agreements among Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain amount to an “arms deal” so the UAE can purchase F-35 jets form the U.S.

In an interview with Hill.TV’s “Rising” Wednesday, Parsi said more dialogue in the Middle East was a good thing but noted that Israel was never at war with the two Gulf states and that the agreements signed Tuesday at the White House could ultimately further entangle the U.S. in the region.

“[T]he thing that worries me tremendously about this is that it’s become quite clear, this is not a peace deal, because at the end of the day the UAE and Bahrain were not at war this Israel, they’ve never been at war with Israel. This is an arms deal in which in order for the UAE to be able to buy F-35s from the United States, it had to give this concession and normalize relations with Israel,” he said.

“They’re buying it as a security guarantee. By buying a lot of American weapons, their calculation is that the United States will be obligated to come to the UAE’s defense,” Parsi added. “Instead of this actually creating peace, this seems to be something that is doing one more thing to bind the United States to the security of some of these states who themselves act quite recklessly, which then forces the U.S. to stay in the Middle East much longer…” 

You can watch more of Parsi’s interview above.