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A Corbyn Government Would Be a Terrorist Threat to the Western World

October 19, 2018,

The intense public discussion on anti-Semitism in the UK Labour party has almost entirely overshadowed the problem of the huge risk a Corbyn-led government would represent to the Western world. Corbyn, a terrorist sympathizer, and various problematic associates of his would gain access to intelligence gathered by the British security services. How safe would it then be for other Western countries to continue to share high-level intelligence with their British colleagues?more

The North Korean Air Force: A Declining or Evolving Threat?

October 18, 2018, and

North Korea's nuclear weapons and ballistic missile tests during the Kim Jong-un era have strengthened the country’s military power, deterring South Korea, Japan, and, in particular, the United States. While North Korea's nuclear and missile capabilities are rapidly improving, parallel developments are not occurring in the traditionally technical air and air defense forces. Plagued with aging airframes, technical problems, part shortages, and budget shortfalls, the North Korean Air Force no longer challenges the South Korean and American air forces. While North Korea will not be able to build its own state-of-the-art aircraft industry, it will nonetheless find creative ways to strengthen its air force capabilities.more

Khan Ahmar: Israel’s Opportunity

While there is little doubt that the Bedouin settlement of Khan Ahmar (on the Jerusalem-Dead Sea road) was illegally built, the decision to move its residents to an alternative site needs to be reassessed despite its approval by the Supreme Court. It involves much broader strategic questions than the necessity to enforce the rule of law in one particular case.more

Israel, Don’t Sacrifice Deterrence for Revenge

October 16, 2018,

Israel claims its policy of demolishing terrorists’ homes is a justified security measure. Destroying the family home of terrorist Khalil Yussef Ali Jabarin despite the fact that his family tried to prevent his attack on Ari Fuld seems more an act of revenge than deterrence, and could generate serious blowback with major ramifications.more

Merkel’s Approach to Israel Has Not Progressed

October 15, 2018,

German-Israeli relations are difficult in view of Germany’s Nazi past. Angela Merkel does not ignore her country’s history, and has played a significant role in strengthening the bilateral relationship. However, new security challenges and problems require solutions. Merkel’s recent visit to Jerusalem showed that her approach to Israel needs readjustment to address urgent issues on a practical, not only a theoretical, level.more

President Trump, Tell the Palestinians: No Negotiations Without Recognition of Jewish Self-Determination

October 14, 2018,

While President Donald Trump was right to reiterate the American commitment to a “future of peace and stability in the region, including peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians” when he addressed the UN General Assembly on September 25, this is not enough. He should demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel’s right to exist in peace and security as a Jewish state and insist that the US will not press Israel to negotiate with the Palestinians unless and until that happens.more

Normalizing Anti-Semitism in the US

October 12, 2018,

Anti-Semitism is growing increasingly normalized in American society, particularly in progressive circles. Today's progressive Left, led by Bernie Sanders and others like him, is even further removed from the facts than the Democratic Party was under Clinton. One of the most pernicious effects of this normalization relates to the discourse on Israel.more

Danish BDS-Supporting Bank Behind Vast Money-Laundering Scheme

October 12, 2018,

Denmark’s largest bank, Danske Bank, has admitted that its Estonian banking subsidiary has been involved in what is probably the largest dirty money-laundering scandal in Europe’s history. In recent years, this deeply corrupt bank has boycotted several Israeli companies on “ethical grounds.” Israel should use the Danske Bank case as a key example of fraudulent anti-Israeli moralists. Revelations from further investigations into the bank’s misbehavior will likely result in many additional disclosures in years to come.more

Trump Stands Firm Against Bias and Abuses at International Organizations

October 11, 2018,

President Donald Trump believes his controversial standing at home and assertive policies abroad lie behind the pattern of countries daring to challenge American interests in international organizations. He has responded with an aggressive new strategy against widespread abuses and anti-Americanism at the UN and a host of other international fora. Trump's strategy serves Jerusalem’s interests because Israel has been a consistent victim of obsession, hostility, hypocrisy, and double standards on the floors of many of these organizations.more

Turkey’s Syrian Quagmire

October 10, 2018,

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan does not understand that his biggest divergence with Russia is over the future of all of Syria, not just a Syrian province. In theory, it is understandable that he wants to protect the “moderate fighters” because he feels indebted to them for their help to the Turkish army in two cross-border operations. But more than that, he wants to protect them in order to maintain a force that can eventually fight either or both of his two nemeses in Syria: President Assad and the Syrian Kurds.more

Myanmar: The Dark Side of the Rohingya Muslim Minority

A UNHRC report has found Myanmar’s authorities responsible for “the gravest crimes under international law” against the Rohingya Muslim minority – crimes that led to a massive exodus to Bangladesh. The report concludes that the army must be investigated for genocide against the Rohingya. This blunt condemnation of the Myanmar authorities does not correspond to solid intelligence data proving terror attacks by Rohingya’s ARSA militants against government assets and the killing of military and police personnel, as well as Buddhist citizens. Several conclusions of the UNHRC Mission ought to be revisited.more

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New at BESA Center

Conference: The Oslo Process 25 Years On

September 3, 2018

On September 3, 2018, the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies convened a conference on “The Oslo Process 25 Years On”.

The Privileged Palestinian “Refugees”

May 15, 2018

The “Palestine refugees” have been exceptionally indulged by the international community for seventy long years. This ranged from their very recognition as refugees though most of them fail to satisfy the basic criteria for such status, to the unprecedented benefit of a relief agency created exclusively for their welfare (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, or UNRWA), to the unique privilege of passing on “refugee” status to future generations.

Conference: Reforming UNRWA

March 18, 2018

“Palestine refugees” have been exceptionally indulged by the international community for 70 long years. Consider the ways: They should not even have been classified as refugees, they had the unprecedented benefit of a relief agency created exclusively for their welfare (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, or UNRWA), and they uniquely can pass on the “refugee” status to future generations.

Reframing the Middle Eastern and Palestinian Refugee Crises

March 13, 2018 and

There are two Middle Eastern refugee crises currently vying for resources and attention. One is nominally focused on Syria but in fact extends from Libya to Afghanistan. The other crisis is Palestinian and has supposedly been going on since 1948. A closer look at the causes of these crises shows the former to be primarily the result of the collapsing Arab state system and the rise of militant Islam, while the latter cannot be considered a crisis at all.

Conference: Strategic Challenges in Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the Gulf

February 22, 2018

Videos from the February 22 international conference on Strategic Challenges in Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the Gulf, convened by the BESA Center and B’nai B’rith International.

Surviving Donald Trump: Israel’s Strategic Options

February 2, 2018

While Israel has always been determinedly self-reliant on core matters of national security, this posture needs to become even more explicit in the disjointed “Trump Era.” In correctly acknowledging the unpredictability and possible incoherence of Trump’s developing policies towards the Middle East, Jerusalem will need to direct special attention towards growing prospects for “Cold War II,” and certain incrementally needed revisions of Israeli nuclear strategy.

DEBATE: What Is the Best Way to Deal with North Korea?

December 31, 2017

Q: A few weeks after the visit of US President Donald Trump to Asia, North Korea is continuing with its missile launches. While the military option is openly on Washington’s agenda, a potential diplomatic solution cannot be excluded. BESA is joining the debate by asking experts: What is the best way to deal with North Korea?

Recent Conferences

Australia-Israel Dialogue

November 1, 2017

On November 1, 2017, the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and Bar-Ilan Univeristy co-hosted the “Be’er Sheva Dialogue” at the Renaissance Tel Aviv Hotel. The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP, Prime Minister of Australia, was in attendance.

Strategic Challenges in the Eastern Mediterranean

February 21, 2017

On February 21, 2017, for the second consecutive year, the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies and B’nai B’rith International jointly held an international conference on Strategic Challenges in the Eastern Mediterranean. The event, which took place at the Begin-Sadat Center, involved the participation of experts from Greece, Russia, Britain, Turkey, Albania, the US, and Israel.