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Middle East Expert Joel Rosenberg: Now is Not Right Time for Israel's Annexation of Biblical Areas

07-27-2020
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Israel Annexation
Israel Annexation

Above: Middle East expert Joel Rosenberg discusses why now is not the right time for Israel's annexation of biblical areas. 

For months the big story in Israel was the possible annexation of portions of the biblical region of Judea and Samaria, also known as the West Bank.

But with COVID-19 putting the nation under lockdown and heightening a political crisis for the government, the issue seems to have fallen off the radar screen, both in Israel and with the Trump administration.

In a recent speech to American evangelicals, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not mention the topic once.

New York Times best-selling author and Middle East expert Joel Rosenberg was at the gathering. He said, that while he supports annexation, a delay might not be a bad thing.

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"I'm for Israel peacefully incorporating more and more of the biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria over time," he explained. "Right now, I don't think it's a good idea. Not before the elections. Not before we know whether President Trump is in fact going to be around for the next four years to give Israel some cover."

Rosenberg said Israel's seen a surge in COVID-19 cases, which has drastically affected the Israeli economy. He believes annexation could incite new terrorist activity.

"We're seeing a huge spike again in COVID cases and the economy is nearly shut down. It's not the best time to add a new international complicator and possibly an incentive for terrorists," he added.

He said the Trump administration has stood with Israel in annexing the West Bank, but moving forward with the plan could strain the relationship.

"Don't add a new element in the US-Israeli relationship between now and November. Let Israel work its way through COVID and through the economic challenges and keep working on trying to open up peace opportunities with the Gulf states. Don't add a new controversial complicator into that equation," Rosenberg concluded. 

To read more from Rosenberg's blog, click here

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