The Middle East's New Map

(National Interest) Robert D. Kaplan - The imminent establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain means that the process of ending the era of Arab-Israeli confrontation will continue. Even without official ties, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, and Oman all have in a spiritual sense ended their hostility to the Jewish state. The new Arab-Israeli security condominium will go beyond the naval sphere and embrace high-tech security and warfare in all its aspects. The Middle East is in the complicated process of transformation. Since the 1960s, the Baathist totalitarian regimes in Syria and Iraq had organized the rejection front against Israel. But those states, along with radical Libya, are now utterly shattered. The Palestinians, Qatar, and Shiite elements in Lebanon are all that's left of the Arab rejection front, which now has to rely on support from non-Arab Turkey and Iran. We are in a new era: one of Arab-Israeli implicit and explicit cooperation, Turkish neo-Ottoman expansion, and Iranian internal crisis, all under the creeping economic shadow of the Chinese. The writer holds the Chair in Geopolitics at the Foreign Policy Research Institute.

2020-09-29 00:00:00

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