Perspectives Papers

Perspectives Papers provide analysis from BESA Center research associates and other outside experts on the most important issues pertaining to Israel and the Middle East.

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A Wealth of Friendship

No. 365
| September 20, 2016

The landmark US defense aid package signed on September 14 is an important event for Israel, for three reasons. First, it indicates the depth of the American leadership's commitment to Israel's security, despite differences of opinion between the two countries. Second, it allows the IDF to sustain its multiyear plans to bolster capabilities in every field. And third, it signals to all those plotting against Israel in the region and the world that Israel's friendship with the US remains strong.

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The Turks in Syria and the Kurds in “Rojava”: Prelude to Tragedy or Reasonable Compromise?

No. 364
| September 12, 2016

As Turkish forces pursue their long-overdue campaign in northern Syria, it is increasingly clear that their main goal is to reduce or destroy the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, largely Kurdish in composition, rather than fight IS.

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China’s New Position on the Middle East

No. 363
| September 11, 2016

China has taken several actions relating to the Middle East since the beginning of 2016 that suggest a new approach to the region. The Chinese president visited the Middle East, a new law was passed permitting China to be involved in military action beyond its own borders, and a new Chinese forum was established to promote peace in the region.

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The Erdoğan-Gülen Rivalry

No. 362
| September 7, 2016

Ankara has sent evidence to Washington allegedly proving that Fethullah Gülen, who resides in Pennsylvania, orchestrated the recent failed coup in Turkey.

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The Middle East Will Remain a Source of Terrorism

No. 361
| September 1, 2016

The collapse of the Arab state system and the rise of political Islam have destabilized the Middle East and entrenched the region as the major source of global terror. Even the more stable states, such as Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, display strong Islamic tendencies and support radical groups that engage in terrorism.

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Cyberspace, the Final Frontier

No. 360

Israel’s young cyber industry is proving to be a remarkable success story. Between the National Cyber Bureau and the budding Cyber Defense Agency, Israel can protect its critical infrastructure and continue cementing its position as a global cybersecurity powerhouse.

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Turkey, the Refugee Crisis and Brexit: Concerns and Opportunities for Greece

No. 359
| August 12, 2016

The unending refugee crisis, the failed Turkish coup and subsequent purge, and Brexit are all causing great apprehension in Athens. But these challenges might present new opportunities. Turkish tensions with the West highlight Greece’s status as the most responsible element in the eastern Mediterranean, which could bolster Greece’s relations with both the EU and the US.

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Islamic State Should be Wiped Out

No. 358
| August 11, 2016

Prof. Efraim Inbar is wrong to argue that the West is better off with Islamic State organization maintaining its caliphate. On the contrary: Defeating IS and the horror it perpetuates requires nothing less than the elimination of its caliphate. Through control of territory, IS is able to inspire and train recruits, to direct terrorist attacks, and to demonstrate the West's inability to eradicate a pressing threat.

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Raqqa Delenda Est: Why Baghdadi’s “Caliphate” Should Be Destroyed

No. 357
| August 10, 2016

While Iran remains the greatest threat to the region, the continued existence of IS fortifies rather than enervates Iran’s quest for hegemony. The destruction of IS should be the first stage in a campaign designed ultimately to isolate and contain Iran.

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The New Threat of Very Accurate Missiles

No. 356
| August 9, 2016

Precision-guided medium-range missiles, a relatively new technology, are beginning to proliferate in the Middle East. When they work as designed, they can deliver half a ton of high explosive to within meters of their targets. This means that for many targets, they are almost as effective as nuclear weapons.

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