Trading Hot Air

As any experienced negotiator knows, one of the key tactics in complex negotiations, is to include in the ‘Ask’ certain items that one is happily willing to give up. Doing so enables the other side to rationalise that after all, both sides are giving up on certain issues. A top negotiator will even create a crisis item that is completely artificial, but seems very credible, in order to be able to use it as a bargaining chip.

A master negotiator is able to do this on the world stage. Benjamin Netanyahu is certainly such a master negotiator. He was able to ‘sell’ a standstill on the sovereignty issue over parts of Judea and Samaria in exchange for full recognition and relations with a key growing Arab power like the UAE. He got a top result by giving up something that either was never going to happen, or at the very least was already not actual, given that Trump has the proverbial bigger fish to fry at this time.

On the media front, Bibi scored another key ‘win.’  There are two ways to win a confrontation, the first one is to simply defeat your enemy, the other is when the enemy acknowledges your position. This is what is happening today in Israel, with the uber Liberal Haaretz daily having to admit: “In UAE Deal, Netanyahu Trades Imaginary Annexation for Real Life Diplomacy Win.” It doesn’t get sweeter than that.