Just two weeks ago, the first Israeli commercial airline flight landed in Abu Dhabi from Tel Aviv. Along with a large delegation of Israeli officials and media, it carried a bigger message. It was written in two-foot high letters in three languages on the side of the El Al aircraft: Peace. Shalom. Salaam.
Normalizing ties between United Arab Emirates and Israel is a historic diplomatic breakthrough and a hopeful signal that progress in the Middle East is possible. Strengthened further with the addition of Bahrain, it resets outmoded thinking and reorders the strategic approach to tackling the region’s challenges. In an area and era all too rife with bad news, it elevates opportunity and optimism over conflict and defeatism.