Israel in the eye of a hurricane. Egypt is an unruly military dictatorship, Syria is at war and the government may fall in Tunisia, Libya has no real government, Lebanon is now seeing growing Sunni-Shia strife, Jordan has half-million Syrian refugees and the flow continues. There are those of course who think the Israeli-Palestinian conflict remains the key, central, main, critical issue in the entire region. Kerry said of the chemical weapons use by Syria “nothing today is more serious and nothing is receiving more serious scrutiny”. And al long as Iran is seen as a threat by the Sunni world, Israel’s relations with those states will not collapse. But what worries Israel’s most of all is not Iran; that’s second. First comes us, the US. We are not only seen to be losing influence in the regions but to be doing it willfully, purposefully. For Israelis, tied so closely to the US and dependent on us in many ways, our budget squeeze they appreciate that Iraq and AFG left America tired of wars, do not fully appreciate how much events in Libya, Egypt, Syria and elsewhere leave Americans thinking the Middle East is hopeless. It seems that a consensus is growing that an Iranian bomb is truly unacceptable, and that as a last resort Israel must act to prevent it. “ Last resort means they still wish the Americans with our vastly greater firepower would do it, but one meets few Israelis who believe that will happen.
It is especially worrying to them that American prestige and clout in the region are at a historic low!
LESSONS FOR JERUSALEM: What are the lesson they must learn?
Russia remains important players in the region after all, not just by selling arms to Syria but at the UN as well. Being able to communicate directly with Putin and foreign minister Sergey Lavroy in a relationship separate and independent form that the US helps protect Israel’s interest.
Iran, no one in Israel has the slightest faith that Obama means to bomb the Iranian nuclear sites. The handling of Syria shows his aversion to using force and potentially involving the US in another Middle East war. The Dems are no longer offering such assurances on what Obama will do. Israelis concerned now about a Russian-led diplomatic offensive, makes an Israeli strike nearly impossible. The lessons here are to work hard to toughen the American position in negotiations with Iran and keep honing their own strike plans.
USA: the unreliability of their own chief ally and closet friend have watched Obama reversals that lead him to talk of strikes at Syria then demand a congressional vote, then postpone. Saw Putin maneuver around these changes. What to do then, first keep humoring the Obama adm. verbally supporting Obama on Syria. Pursue your own relationships with Russia, Europe and the Arab states. Israel and France can toughen the Western negotiation position on Iran or Israel and Egypt can work together to weaken Hamas in Gaza or Israel and the Gulf Arab states can talk together about how to handle conflicts with Iran.
WHAT DOES ISRAEL DO: The Arab League has 22 members states, the Islamic Conference has 57, and there are in the world perhaps two billion Muslims. Christians communities have for years been threatened and attacked in Iraq, Lebanon and most recently Syria and Egypt with little reactions form the world’s town billion Christians. Who would protect the Jews should they ever be in a similar situation. Israelis don’t believe they survive because they are a democracy or a “startup nation” but because they are strong and willing to use their strength. Israel must in the end be able and willing to defend itself by itself.
Sources—weekly standard, elliot Abrams,