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Arab Diplomat's OPED in Hebrew Paper
By Micah Halpern

Sunday June 14, 2020

I've Been Thinking:

It was a unique moment in Israeli journalism.

The front page of the Hebrew daily Yediot Ahronot had an opinion piece, in Hebrew, written by Yousef al Otaiba, the United Arab Emirates Ambassador to the United States. The oped column was about Israels decision to annex the West Bank.

It seems that Israeli American billionaire Haim Saban, inventor of Transformers, advised the UAE ambassador and even brought in his own media advisor.
Al Otaiba wrote that annexation would put in question the long strides that have been made between Gulf states and Israel.

As part of his conclusion the ambassador wrote: Direct links. Expanded markets. Growing acceptance. That is what normal could be Normal is not annexation.

The UAE ambassador to the United States took his message directly to the Israeli reader.

Israelis are very excited about growing regional acceptance and expanding markets, so writing in Yediot in Hebrew, was an extremely wise political move. It demonstrated recognition of Israel and respect for Israeli readers.

In his own way, via this oped, Saban and his advisers may have achieved more than any political party or politician in bringing their opinion to the attention of the Israeli public.

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16 June 2020 12:04 AM in Thoughts

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