Everyone Loves Israel Now

(Foreign Policy) Shai Feldman and Tamara Cofman Wittes - Perhaps the most surprising thing about the Arab world today is how relatively uncontroversial Israel has become. First, there is a new security agenda that unifies Israel and key Arab states against threats from Iran and Islamist extremism. Second, a regional energy revolution has transformed Israel not only into an energy independent state but into an energy exporter. The recent $15 billon agreement signed between Israeli and Egyptian companies for the sale of natural gas is a game-changer that will allow Egypt to profit from liquefying and re-exporting the purchased gas to Europe and Africa, boosting its prospects as a regional energy hub and creating economic interdependence between the two countries. There has also been a parallel decline in Arab governments' interest in the Palestinian issue as they show growing signs of fatigue regarding all matters Palestinian. Arab governments are showing increasing impatience with ineffective and divided Palestinian leadership. Many Sunni Arab governments increasingly viewing themselves as better off with Israel's presence in the region. Yet Arab publics continue to care about the Palestinians, of whose plight they are reminded by the regional media on a weekly if not daily basis. Shai Feldman is director of Brandeis University's Crown Center for Middle East Studies. Tamara Cofman Wittes is a senior fellow at the Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution.

2018-03-30 00:00:00

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