The Implications of Middle East Chaos

(Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies-Bar-Ilan University) Maj. Gen. (ret.) Yaakov Amidror - Israel is surrounded on almost every side by terrorist organizations with considerable offensive capabilities. Because of their character, the possibility of passing over to real warfare without advance notice, at any moment, and without a lot of preparation, must be taken into consideration. All the radical Islamic organizations have a shared foundation: all of them believe that Islam should rule the world. With a belief in the supremacy of Islam, they are united in their hatred of Israel (among other countries), and in some cases they are even prepared to play down their mutual conflict and help each other fight against Israel. They perceive Israel as an alien entity - as the long arm of the West, led by the U.S. If Israel's power is reduced, or if it loses the determination required to use that power, then it will be destroyed, having no place in the brutal world in which its enemies use weapons of the twenty-first century, but fight and kill according to the rules of conduct of the seventh century. Recently, a leader of a Western state, who had already retired from his post, said to me that even if he does not say this out loud, he understands that Israel stands at the forefront of the battle of the democratic and modern world against the forces of radical Islam. It is supremely important for Israel's blade to be sharp, and for Israel to be prepared to use it, and not only for its own sake. Developments like the increase in power of the Islamic forces such as IS, or Iran obtaining nuclear capabilities, turn the matter of reaching an agreement with the Palestinians into a very problematic issue. In such circumstances, the chances increase greatly that whoever signs an agreement with Israel will not necessarily be the party that ultimately rules the territory. It is possible, and even probable, that the most radical forces in the Muslim world will take power, as they have elsewhere, over the West Bank and Gaza. Any agreement with the Palestinians must be based on the understanding that no signatory and no guarantor of the agreement will have the power to prevent Islamic radicalization among the Palestinians. No one can guarantee that the Palestinian government will be strong enough and capable enough to stand up to the wave of radical Islam. The writer served as National Security Adviser to the Prime Minister, head of the National Security Council, and head of the research division of IDF Intelligence.

2015-07-13 00:00:00

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