Mideast Security and Policy Studies

Mideast Security and Policy Studies serve as a forum for publication or re-publication of research conducted by BESA Center research associates.

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The Game of Camps: Ideological Fault Lines in the Wreckage of the Arab State System

| September 21, 2016

This study maps four Arab ideological camps and their interactions: The Iranian camp, Islamic State camp, Muslim Brotherhood camp, and the “counter camp” – which consists of the forces of stability, ranging from Saudi Arabia and most of the Gulf states to Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia, and Morocco, as well as the Kurds and other non-Arab players.

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The Oslo Disaster

| September 4, 2016

The Oslo diplomatic process is the starkest strategic blunder in Israel’s history and one of the worst calamities ever to have afflicted Israelis and Palestinians. Twenty three years after its euphoric launch on the White House lawn, the Oslo ‘peace process’ has substantially worsened the position of both parties, and made the prospects for peace and reconciliation ever more remote.

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Implications of US Disengagement from the Middle East

| July 26, 2016

The adverse implications of US withdrawal from the Middle East are manifold, including: the acceleration of Tehran’s drive to regional hegemony, the palpable risk of regional nuclear proliferation following the JCPOA, the spread of jihadist Islam, and Russia’s growing penetration of the region. Manifest US weakness is also bound to have ripple effects far beyond the Middle East.

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Trends in US Congressional Support for Israel

and | June 6, 2016

While congressional support for Israel has historically transcended the partisan divide, Republicans and Democrats are growing less cooperative with regard to the means by which to express that support. The authors term this development as “congressional dysergia.” Tensions between the executive branch and Congress are growing as well, as exhibited in conflicts between the Republican-dominated Congress and President Obama.

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The Return of the Russian Bear to the Middle East

| June 5, 2016

This study looks at the aggressive new posture in Russian foreign policy under President Vladimir Putin, in the wake of its intervention in Syria and the Crimean peninsula.

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Indian Responses to Israel's Gaza Operations

| May 25, 2016

This study examines Indian governmental responses to the three major Israeli military interventions in the Gaza Strip over the past decade. It reviews the unprecedented parliamentary debate that took place in India during Operation Protective Edge, when the government sidestepped opposition demands for a resolution critical of Israel. It also assesses the Modi government’s intention to inject new dynamism into the India-Israel relationship.

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The ISIS Challenge in Syria; Implications for Israeli Security

| May 8, 2016

A study of the strategic goals and military performance of ISIS; the relative strength of its opponents; the reactions of those opponents, especially Iran, to possible ISIS gains; and the threat to Israeli national security posed by ISIS. As long as Iran does not infringe on Israel’s “red lines” (regarding the transfer of advanced weaponry and terrorist bases on its borders) Israel should remain militarily neutral in the conflict with ISIS.

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The Mediterranean as a Strategic Environment: Learning a New Geopolitical Language

| March 10, 2016

This study argues that it is time to let go of the old colonial concept, the “Middle East,” and re-learn to think in Mediterranean terms. The Eastern Mediterranean has become a key area for global security, with two dangerous challenges, and an important opportunity. The challenges are the regional refugee crisis due to chaotic conditions in Syria, Libya and beyond; and the growing hold upon Mediterranean shores of totalitarian Islamism in its various forms. The opportunity lies in energy cooperation between Israel, Egypt, Jordan, Greece and Cyprus (with a role for Italy). This is not an effort to isolate Turkey, but rather to create a regional balance of power, in which Turkey could also play a role once that country’s leadership matures and moderates.

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Hamas: A Social Welfare Government or War Machine?

| December 1, 2015

Hamas prides itself on having a reputation dedicated to the public welfare of Palestinians and for providing a variety of social services. The following study evaluates the veracity of this claim. The Hamas government in Gaza acts as another case study that highlights the disastrous leadership which plagued the Palestinian national movement since its inception.

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"Deterrence Campaigns": Lessons from IDF Operations in Gaza

| October 15, 2015

This study examines the major gaps in strategic and operative approaches regarding Deterrence Campaigns. It focuses on military operations in Gaza.

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