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Middle East

Israel Considers Striking Iran’s Nuclear Facilities

Much to Israel’s consternation, international talks to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement resumed in Vienna on November 29 after a five-month hiatus. The accord, hailed by U.S. President Barack Obama as a landmark achievement but greeted by Israel with apprehension, disappointment and scorn, granted Iran relief from crippling economic sanctions. In exchange for this […]

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Middle East

A Strategic Consensus In The Middle East

Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on March 20, 1981, U.S. Secretary of State Alexander Haig said the Reagan administration was trying to build a “strategic consensus” to counter the influence of the Soviet Union, its chief global adversary, in a region encompassing countries from Pakistan to Egypt. Claiming that the Soviet Union was […]

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Middle East

Israeli Decision Triggers Pushback

Last month, Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz designated six Palestinian civil and human rights groups in the West Bank as terrorist organizations with links to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. This is an outfit whose armed wing has hijacked Israeli aircraft and carried out attacks against Israelis since the 1967 Six Day […]

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Middle East

Old Wine In New Bottles

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett wants the best of both worlds. He seeks to enlarge Israel’s footprint in ┬áthe West Bank by expanding Jewish settlements while, paradoxically enough, reducing friction with the Palestinians. Bennett’s policy is contradictory, aimed at consolidating Israel’s occupation of the contested West Bank, encouraging the Palestinians to accept autonomy rather than […]

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Middle East

Netanyahu Shows His True Colors Yet Again

For Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s former prime minister, political survival is not only a means to an end, but an indicator of his true persona. Several days ago, Netanyahu — a secular Jew in every respect — showed his true colors when he retweeted an appallingly divisive message from Aryeh Deri, the leader of the ultra-Orthodox […]

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Middle East

Military Coup In Sudan Could Affect Israel

Israel has a vital stake in the military coup that shook Sudan a few days ago. On October 25, a little more than a year after the United States announced that Sudan had agreed to forge official relations with Israel, chaos enveloped the capital, Khartoum, placing Israel’s normalization pact with Sudan under a cloud of […]

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Middle East

Russia And Israel Strike An Upbeat Note

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s first face-to-face meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Black Sea resort town of Sochi on October 22 appears to have been a success. Their talks were scheduled to last two hours, but went on for five hours, an unmistakable sign that matters of mutual importance were discussed on a […]

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Middle East

Netanyahu Can’t Accept His Loss Of Israel’s Premiership

Benjamin Netanyahu is having a devilishly hard time internalizing the harsh reality that his days as Israel’s prime minister are behind him. From the moment he stepped down from his post on June 13 and was replaced by Naftali Bennett, his former cabinet colleague and defence minister, Netanyahu has been on the offensive in his […]

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Middle East

Closing The Arab-Jewish Gap In Israel

The inclusion of an Arab party in Israel’s coalition government already has had a significant material impact on the Israeli Arab community. When Prime Minister Naftali Bennett unveils the budget next month, an unprecedented $10 billion in state funds will be allocated to the generally neglected Arab sector, comprising 21 percent of Israel’s population. The […]

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Middle East

Lebanon Teeters On The Brink Again

Raging gun battles in the center of Beirut on August 14 claimed the lives of seven people and raised the grim specter that Lebanon may be returning to the era of sectarian violence that climaxed with the outbreak of the civil war from 1975 to 1990. Fighting erupted after two influential Shi’a Muslim militias, Hezbollah […]