Normalization of relations between the Arabs and the Zionist regime: stop or postpone?

Productive power is the most complex and effective way of exercising power
19 November 2023
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Seyyed Mohammad Hosseini

Productive power is the most complex and effective way of exercising power. Propositions and concepts generate power and productive power by conceptualizing and formulating social and political realities in the color of their concepts and, in this way, using thoughts and emotions for their interests. Productive power that is regenerated, other aspects of power will also be in the hands of the bearers of the dominant discourse. Based on this, dominant discourses strongly resist anti-discourses (competing discourses). For every reality that occurs, discourses and anti-discourses try to change the reality into their own productive color and, in this way, reproduce their productive propositions.

In the issue of Palestine, the two main political and security currents, namely the resistance front and the Western-Arab-Hebrew front, have created a bipolar structure. The strength of these two fronts is more than the material components in their normative components. The resistance front is based on the discourse of resistance, and the Western-Arab front is based on the discourse of compromise. When a reality like the Al-Aqsa storm and the Gaza war happens, the bearers of each discourse of compromise and resistance try to present this war in their productive color. The resistance front presents a narrative of the breaking of the Zionist regime's hegemony and the self-aggression of the Zionists, the inefficiency of the international regimes, and the biased support of America and the West for the obvious crimes of the Zionists as a confirmation of the correctness of the resistance discourse. The Arab front also presents the number of killings, the severity of the destructions, the inevitability of living with the Zionist regime, the lack of support of the Western bloc for Palestine, etc., as a confirmation of the correctness of the discourse of compromise.

We should consider the need to normalize relations with the Zionist regime as a proposition in the formulation of the discourse of compromise and consider non-compromise with the Zionist regime as a proposition in the formulation of the discourse of resistance.

Since the discourse of resistance and the discourse of compromise are in a bipolar situation (anti-discourse and dominant discourse) in relation to each other, the failure of normalization for Arab compromisers will mean the collapse of the discourse of compromise. Therefore, the bearers of the discourse of compromise are resisting this collapse and will not allow the anti-discourse of resistance to become the dominant discourse in the West Asian region. The issue is not only the normalization with the Zionist regime or the breakdown of relationships with this regime; rather, the main issue for the Arabs is the reproduction of the Arab discourse, which began in 1979, i.e., Camp David, reached Oslo I and II in 1993 and 1995, and from there, with an 18-year gap, it reached the normalization of the UAE and the Zionist regime, and continuing the issue of normalizing the relationship Saudi Arabia and the Zionist regime have been on the agenda.

Now, normalization has become very costly in the public opinion of the Arab world. Still, the political motivations in the region will once again seek to revive it. What if the Arab countries did not (and do not) have the foundation to enter the conflict after the explosion of the war bomb? Rather, they have temporarily suspended the past trends. One of the signs of that is the words of Khalid al-Falih, the Minister of Investments of Saudi Arabia, who said a few days ago: the normalization of relations with the Zionist regime is still on the agenda, but it is always conditional on achieving a peaceful solution to the Palestinian.

Therefore, from the point of view of productive analysis, the Gaza war will not stop the normalization process; rather, it will even strengthen the motivations of the Arabs and especially the Zionist regime to continue normalization and confront the discourse of resistance. Arab countries are not willing to let the discourse of resistance dominate in the region, nor will the Zionist regime be willing to strengthen the discourse of resistance. The more this regime's damage in this war increases, the more this regime's motivations will be to give more concessions to Arab countries in favor of normalization. The Zionist regime is willing to give more concessions to the Arabs so that the discourse of compromise can be reproduced in the region.

Seyyed Mohammad Hosseini, a senior expert at the IPIS

 (The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the IPIS)

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