Jordan Valley Emerges as Core Issue in Mideast Peace Talks

(Washington Post) William Booth and Ruth Eglash - The Israelis are insisting that their troops remain in the Jordan Valley corridor in any future Palestinian entity. IDF Maj. Gen. Gadi Shamni explained: "We would lose a lot if we leave here. Intelligence, deterrence, rapid response. A lot of capabilities, seen and unseen." In the minds of a generation of Israeli military planners, the Jordan Valley is an indispensable line of defense against threats from militant groups operating in the wider Arab world. Today, Israeli troops patrol one side of the Jordan River, Jordanian soldiers the other. An Israeli military intelligence officer said that weapon-smuggling into the West Bank is essentially nonexistent. Israeli security analysts focus on the valley as tomorrow's firewall against jihadists entering the West Bank and delivering a shoulder-fired, anti-aircraft missile to down a commercial airliner at the airport in Tel Aviv.

2014-01-27 00:00:00

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