Saudi Arabia has received messages from the Israeli Left, urging it to put the brakes on a normalization agreement with Israel, Middle East expert Dr. Mordechai Kedar told Israel National News - Arutz Sheva (INN).
In an interview with INN, Dr. Kedar explained that he had a conversation with a Saudi source, which reported to him the messages being sent from the Israeli Left to Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Among the claims made in these messages is that the Left will give the "Palestinians" much more than Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will.
"This is a message which reached me, regarding the fact that in Israel, there are people who sent messages to Mohammed bin Salman, urging him not to advance too far with Netanyahu, because, 'We will return to power at some point, and we will give a lot more to the Palestinians,'" Dr. Kedar told INN.
According to Dr. Kedar, his source was "a Saudi businessman who is close to the royal family; a person who usually speaks seriously."
Dr. Kedar said that the discourse in Saudi Arabia is that political sources on the Israeli left are trying to sabotage the agreement, in order to give more to the Palestinian Authority. Dr. Kedar also said that bin Salman is preoccupied with this issue, "because that is what is bothering most of the Arab world and most of the Islamic world. If he wants to preserve a leadership position, he cannot act against what is considered consensus in the Arab world - that Israel needs to be weakened so that one day it will be possible to eliminate it. He cannot swim against the current."
"What interests him is creating an image of a strong Saudi Arabia for the Americans, so that the Americans will agree to make security deals with them. And if Saudi power means that it can subjugate Israel, then Israel pays the price of convincing the Americans of the Saudi strength and that Saudi Arabia is a leader and leading."
Dr. Kedar also said believes that Israel will need to pay whatever price the Saudis quote for the agreement, since for over 60 years they have lived well enough without an agreement, and they can continue to exist without it. The fact that Netanyahu wants the agreement will lead him to pay the price for it.
"If Israel was strong, as it presented itself a year ago, then maybe they would join up with us for the sake of joining up with us. But after the chaos of the past year, Israel's image is that of a weak government, a government which is not able to clear the Ayalon [Highway], that the police demonstrate against the government, that the pilots and cyber do not want to volunteer - all of this means that the country is weak, and a weak country must pay - and a lot."
Regarding the steps which the Left is proposing to the Saudis, Dr. Kedar said that this can be inferred from the left-wing parties' platforms, in which they propose the creation of a Palestinian state and hope that it does not turn into a Hamas state, even though Hamas already won the elections in January 2006.
"Their intentions are well-known," he said. "It's clear what [Labor chief MK Merav] Michaeli, [Yesh Atid chief MK Yair] Lapid, and [National Unity chief MK Benny] Gantz want to see happen."
He also said that it could be that the messages which the Saudi source referred to - messages which were relayed to the royal family - are messages which were passed through the Americans in one indirect fashion or another.
"It doesn't have to be a message which was transmitted directly through the telephone," he clarified to INN. "I have no idea. It definitely could be a message which was passed through the Americans."
When INN asked about Dr. Kedar's conversations with his source, the Middle East expert responded that these conversations are usually carried out when the source is outside Saudi Arabia's borders, and the conversations take place by landline. To the question of whether Saudi Arabia still worries about speaking with Israelis, Dr. Kedar noted that "every fish knows that if it doesn't open its mouth, it won't be hooked on the fishing line."