Reality Asserts Itself in the Middle East

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Reality Asserts Itself in the Middle East

You know we really have it easy in the US. When our gov­ern­ment lies to our faces about the Iran­ian Nuke deal we can pound our chests, talk about the debase­ment of democ­racy and how these poor deci­sions are mak­ing the mid­dle east a less safe place know­ing that in the end it will be a long hard slog for Iran to hit us with a nuke.

How­ever if you are a nation actu­ally IN the mid­dle east and not half a world away from Iran this threat is not the­o­ret­i­cal it’s happe­ing right in front of you and is cause some peo­ple to think twice about things that have always been:

Among Egypt­ian writ­ers, the idea of reg­u­lar deal­ings with Israel still excites fierce debate, even after nearly four decades of offi­cial peace. The owner of the promi­nent inde­pen­dent daily al-​Masry al-​Yawm out­spo­kenly advo­cates prag­matic close bilat­eral ties, in Egypt’s own inter­est. But lead­ing al-​Ahram colum­nist Has­san Nafaa, in sharp con­trast, argues stren­u­ously against “free gifts” to Israel.

It is intrigu­ing, how­ever, that today even some Egypt­ian writ­ers and aca­d­e­mics most crit­i­cal of ties to Israel acknowl­edge that the younger gen­er­a­tion, turned against Iran, Hamas, and the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood both by their own expe­ri­ence and by their government’s chang­ing posi­tions, is los­ing some of its ani­mos­ity toward their Israeli neigh­bors. Exam­ples of this dis­course can be found in arti­cles penned this year by Egypt­ian authors Muham­mad Laithi in al-​Watan and by Ahmed Hidji in al-​Monitor, who cites three dif­fer­ent Cairo pro­fes­sors lament­ing their stu­dents’ grow­ing open­ness to Israel.

and not just in Egypt but in Saudi Ara­bia too

Par­tic­u­larly note­wor­thy in this respect is a long arti­cle in the cur­rent issue of the pop­u­lar and influ­en­tial pan-​Arab weekly al-​Majallah, based in Lon­don but widely cir­cu­lated and read in both print and online edi­tions in the region. This arti­cle not only reviews the long his­tory of Arab-​Israeli rela­tions, but also cites state­ments about that by Israeli Ambas­sador to the U.S. Ron Der­mer at great length.

Responses by Saudi writ­ers are mixed, but some are very vocally in favor of deal­ing with Israel. For exam­ple, Ahmed Adnan, writ­ing in the alarab​.co​.uk web­site, even argues that Arabs should fol­low Turkey’s model: “Ankara has ties with Israel, but no one can accuse Turkey of being biased against the Pales­tini­ans.” His arti­cle was reprinted in the lead­ing al-​Arabiya web­site on August 8.

And this stuff isn’t just going on in The­ory, it’s hap­pen­ing in practice:

After sev­eral decades of unremit­ting hos­til­ity, some of the fiercest oppo­nents of Israel are start­ing to view the Jew­ish state very dif­fer­ently. Covert ties with Saudi Ara­bia are now becom­ing more open. Egypt, whose cold peace with Israel remained frozen in open hos­til­ity since Anwar Sadat’s assas­si­na­tion, has a gov­ern­ment that is no longer shy about treat­ing Israel as an ally if not a friend. Jerusalem’s rela­tions with much of the Third World, espe­cially African nations, are also warm­ing up.

Oddly enough our lib­eral friends are not amused as the cause of this effect are the fail­ing poli­cies of Barack Obama.

those nations that are tar­geted most directly by Iran — Israel and Saudi Ara­bia — under­stand that U.S. appease­ment of Iran advances the latter’s drive for regional hege­mony as well as merely post­pon­ing the moment when it will achieve nuclear capa­bil­ity. The com­ing together of other Mid­dle East nations in reac­tion to this trav­esty is evi­dence that those most at risk con­sider Obama’s false promises and his desire for a gen­eral U.S. retreat from the region a clear and present dan­ger to the region.

Or to put it sim­ply the real­i­ties of the world are assert­ing itself and the fic­tions that might be com­fort­able to the read­ers of the NYT are of scant com­fort to those actu­ally in the Mid­dle east.

All of this is via Elder of Zyion which should be a reg­u­lar stop if you wish to know what is going on in the Mid­dle East.

You know we really have it easy in the US. When our government lies to our faces about the Iranian Nuke deal we can pound our chests, talk about the debasement of democracy and how these poor decisions are making the middle east a less safe place knowing that in the end it will be a long hard slog for Iran to hit us with a nuke.

However if you are a nation actually IN the middle east and not half a world away from Iran this threat is not theoretical it’s happeing right in front of you and is cause some people to think twice about things that have always been:

Among Egyptian writers, the idea of regular dealings with Israel still excites fierce debate, even after nearly four decades of official peace. The owner of the prominent independent daily al-Masry al-Yawm outspokenly advocates pragmatic close bilateral ties, in Egypt’s own interest. But leading al-Ahram columnist Hassan Nafaa, in sharp contrast, argues strenuously against “free gifts” to Israel.

It is intriguing, however, that today even some Egyptian writers and academics most critical of ties to Israel acknowledge that the younger generation, turned against Iran, Hamas, and the Muslim Brotherhood both by their own experience and by their government’s changing positions, is losing some of its animosity toward their Israeli neighbors. Examples of this discourse can be found in articles penned this year by Egyptian authors Muhammad Laithi in al-Watan and by Ahmed Hidji in al-Monitor, who cites three different Cairo professors lamenting their students’ growing openness to Israel.

and not just in Egypt but in Saudi Arabia too

Particularly noteworthy in this respect is a long article in the current issue of the popular and influential pan-Arab weekly al-Majallah, based in London but widely circulated and read in both print and online editions in the region.  This article not only reviews the long history of Arab-Israeli relations, but also cites statements about that by Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer at great length.

Responses by Saudi writers are mixed, but some are very vocally in favor of dealing with Israel.  For example, Ahmed Adnan, writing in the alarab.co.uk website, even argues that Arabs should follow Turkey’s model:  “Ankara has ties with Israel, but no one can accuse Turkey of being biased against the Palestinians.”  His article was reprinted in the leading al-Arabiya website on August 8.

And this stuff isn’t just going on in Theory, it’s happening in practice:

After several decades of unremitting hostility, some of the fiercest opponents of Israel are starting to view the Jewish state very differently. Covert ties with Saudi Arabia are now becoming more open. Egypt, whose cold peace with Israel remained frozen in open hostility since Anwar Sadat’s assassination, has a government that is no longer shy about treating Israel as an ally if not a friend. Jerusalem’s relations with much of the Third World, especially African nations, are also warming up.

Oddly enough our liberal friends are not amused as the cause of this effect are the failing policies of Barack Obama.

those nations that are targeted most directly by Iran—Israel and Saudi Arabia—understand that U.S. appeasement of Iran advances the latter’s drive for regional hegemony as well as merely postponing the moment when it will achieve nuclear capability. The coming together of other Middle East nations in reaction to this travesty is evidence that those most at risk consider Obama’s false promises and his desire for a general U.S. retreat from the region a clear and present danger to the region.

Or to put it simply the realities of the world are asserting itself and the fictions that might be comfortable to the readers of the NYT are of scant comfort to those actually in the Middle east.

All of this is via Elder of Zyion which should be a regular stop if you wish to know what is going on in the Middle East.