President Trump presided over U.S.-brokered normalization agreements between Israel and Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates at the White House on Tuesday, cementing formal diplomatic ties between the countries through deals with few public details.

Why it matters: "The last Arab state to make peace with Israel was Jordan, in 1994. Egypt was the first, in 1979. The agreement is also significant for relegating the Palestinians to the sidelines," WashPost reports.

What they're saying: “We’re here this afternoon to change the course of history,” Trump said on the White House South Lawn. “After decades of division and conflict, we mark the dawn of a new Middle East."

  • Netanyahu: "Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. President, this day is a pivot of history. It heralds a new dawn of peace. For thousands of years, the Jewish people have prayed for peace. For decades, the Jewish state has prayed for peace. ... To all of Israel's friends in the Middle East, those who are with us today and those who will join us tomorrow, I say, Salaam aleichem. Peace unto thee. Shalom!"
  • UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan: "Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, thank you for choosing peace and for halting annexation of Palestinian territories. That position reinforces our shared goal to achieve better future for generations to come."
  • Bahrain Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid al Zayani: "The declaration supporting peace between the kingdom of Bahrain and the state of Israel is an historic step on the road to genuine and lasting peace, security and prosperity across the region and for all who live there regardless of religion, sect, ethnicity or ideology."

Between the lines: There were three documents signed today, reflecting the multiple parties in the room, reports Barak Ravid.

  1. The “Abraham accords declaration” was signed by Trump, Netanyahu and the foreign ministers of the UAE and Bahrain. It focuses on the intentions of all the parties to promote peace in the region.
  2. A "peace declaration” between Israel and Bahrain – a general document short of an agreement which will include a commitment by both parties to draft a peace treaty.
  3. The Israel-UAE peace treaty. The treaty will come into force only after a vote in the Israeli cabinet and in the Israeli Knesset.

Go deeper: UAE minister says Israel agreement will include two-state solution reference

Go deeper

Sep 23, 2020 - World

U.S.-Sudan talks on normalization with Israel end without breakthrough

Negotiations in Abu Dhabi between the U.S. and Sudan have ended without a breakthrough on Sudanese recognition of Israel, sources briefed on the talks tell me.

The big picture: Sudan is trying to re-engage with the world economically as it transitions from the dictatorship of Omar al-Bashir, and needs U.S. sanctions relief to do so. The U.S., meanwhile, has pushed Sudan to become the latest Arab country to normalize relations with Israel. The talks in Abu Dhabi, first reported by Axios, were the most substantive to date on that topic.

Trump's 2 chilling debate warnings

Photo: Morry Gash/Pool via Getty Images

One of the few groups in America with anything to celebrate after last night's loud, ugly, rowdy presidential "debate" was the violent, far-right Proud Boys, after President Trump pointedly refused to condemn white supremacist groups.

Why it matters: This was a for-the-history-books moment in a debate that was mostly headache-inducing noise. Trump failed to condemn racist groups after four months when millions marched for racial justice in the country's largest wave of activism in half a century.

Ina Fried, author of Login
56 mins ago - Technology

Candidates go online to cut through debate noise

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

While President Trump and Joe Biden fought to be heard in a rowdy debate Tuesday, both campaigns sought to draw digital battle lines and occupy online turf they could have all to themselves.

The big picture: Trump's impulsive Twitter style made a shambles of the debate format, but online the candidates were able to find niches where they couldn't be interrupted — and could motivate their supporters to donate, organize and turn out to vote.

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