Decision Points


A Behind the Scenes Account of King Hussein and Jordanian-Israeli Peace Ties

Season 2, Ep. 8

When King Hussein ascended to the throne at the age of sixteen, he dedicated his life to building a peaceful and prosperous Jordan. His reign was far from simple, however—he faced multiple wars abroad, a civil war at home, assassination attempts, and diplomatic crises. Throughout this tumultuous period, he maintained one secret connection that would only be made official years later: his relationship with Israel. The peace treaty signed by the two countries has endured for over twenty-five years and has been an important force for stability in the region.


Join David Makovsky for conversations with two guests who knew the king personally: his brother Prince Hassan bin Talal, and Israel’s former Mossad director Efraim Halevy, who was integral to negotiating the bilateral peace. The episode features some never-before-heard revelations about Jordanian-Israeli relations. Washington Institute Director Rob Satloff frames the discussion and provides historical perspective.

Audio Clips Used

King Abdullah Assassinated (1951)

King Hussein of Jordan making a Speech about the Israel/Jordan peace agreement 

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