[Ed. – Note that the U.S., by recognizing Morocco’s sovereignty over the Western Sahara region, is executing a blocking move against Russia. Since about 5 years ago, Russia has reverted to the Soviet-era posture of supporting the separatist movement in Western Sahara – something with an obvious geostrategic purpose when you look at a map. Trump’s not having it. No mid-Atlantic, Gibraltar-adjacent real estate for Moscow. Worth noting as well: Iran has been laboring to develop outsize influence in Morocco for nearly 20 years, as part of a strategy focused on chokepoints in the wider region. Yeah, not so fast, there, fellas.]
Israel and Morocco have agreed to normalize relations as President Donald Trump, in his final weeks in office, announced the fourth Arab-Israeli agreement in four months on Thursday. In a related major policy shift, the United States agreed to recognize Morocco’s claim over the long-disputed Western Sahara region as part of the deal.
The agreement adds to Trump’s Mideast legacy just as Joe Biden prepares to assume the presidency in January with an eye toward revamping America’s policies in the region, from Israel to Iran, Iraq and beyond. With Israel, Biden has pledged to return to a more traditional U.S. position, particularly regarding the Palestinians and their aspirations for statehood.
Trump said Israel and Morocco would restore diplomatic and other ties, including the immediate reopening of liaison offices in Tel Aviv and Rabat, the eventual opening of embassies and joint overflight rights for the two nations’ airlines.