Shifting Dynamics of the Mideast Pushed Israel and UAE Together

(New York Times) David M. Halbfinger and Ronen Bergman - At least since 2009, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had been insisting, against conventional wisdom, that Israel could build full diplomatic and trade relationships with Arab countries in the Middle East without settling the Palestinian conflict first. When he sealed a deal to normalize relations with the United Arab Emirates this week, what had changed was the dynamics of the region. As Iranian-sponsored proxy forces grew more powerful across the region, the Gulf states increasingly saw Iran as their greatest threat. According to Maj.-Gen. (ret.) Yaakov Amidror, Netanyahu's former national security adviser, the Gulf countries were hearing from Egypt and Jordan about Israel's helpfulness and reliability on vital matters of national security. An Israeli official said, "Israel is in the region. We're not going to become neo-isolationists or pivot to Asia. And we have this convergence of interests where Israel's enemies are their enemies."

2020-08-17 00:00:00

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