Whether or not you believe in a two-state or one-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian Arab world, the new head of Saudi Arabia, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, made a shocking statement when speaking to The Atlantic: openly acknowledging Israel’s right to exist.
Asked by The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg if he believed the Jewish people had a right to a nation-state in at least part of their ancestral homeland, a question that has traditionally been met with a thunderous ‘No!” by virtually every Arab leader, with the notable exception of Egypt’s Anwar Sadat, who was assassinated for his perspective, Salman replied, "I believe that each people, anywhere, has a right to live in their peaceful nation. I believe the Palestinians and the Israelis have the right to have their own land."
Goldberg pressed, “You have no religious-based objection to the existence of Israel?”
Salman answered, “We have religious concerns about the fate of the holy mosque in Jerusalem and about the rights of the Palestinian people. This is what we have. We don’t have any objection against any other people.”
Salman added, “If there is peace, there would be a lot of interest between Israel and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries and countries like Egypt and Jordan.”
Salman minced no words about the entities he thought were his enemies, referring to “the triangle of evil,” which he identified as Iran, the Muslim Brotherhood, and terrorists such as ISIS and Al Qaeda.
We have the Iranian regime that wants to spread their extremist ideology, their extremist Shiite ideology. They believe that if they spread it, the hidden Imam will come back again and he will rule the whole world from Iran and spread Islam even to America. They’ve said this every day since the Iranian revolution in 1979. It’s in their law and they’re proving it by their own actions.
The second part of the triangle is the Muslim Brotherhood, which is another extremist organization. They want to use the democratic system to rule countries and build shadow caliphates everywhere. Then they would transform into a real Muslim empire. And the other part is the terrorists—al-Qaeda, ISIS—that want to do everything with force. Al-Qaeda leaders, ISIS leaders, they were all Muslim Brotherhood first. Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of ISIS.
Salman also stated, “I believe that the Iranian supreme leader makes Hitler look good. … Hitler didn’t do what the supreme leader is trying to do. Hitler tried to conquer Europe. This is bad … the supreme leader is trying to conquer the world. He believes he owns the world. They are both evil guys. He is the Hitler of the Middle East. In the 1920s and 1930s, no one saw Hitler as a danger. Only a few people. Until it happened. We don’t want to see what happened in Europe happen in the Middle East."