Prof. Eytan Gilboa

Prof. Eytan Gilboa

Prof. Eytan Gilboa

(Ph.D. Harvard) Expert on American-Israeli relations, U.S. policy in the Middle East, American and Israeli politics, public opinion, international communication, and public diplomacy. Email: [email protected]

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.

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Moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem: Righting a Diplomatic Wrong

| May 14, 2018

Jerusalem has been the capital of the state of Israel since 1949. Most states, however – including the US – chose not to recognize Israel’s capital and located their embassies in the Tel Aviv area. There has never been any reason to deny recognition of West Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, either before or after the 1967 Six-Day War. The failure to recognize Israel’s capital is thus a unique diplomatic anomaly. In election campaigns, successive American presidents have promised to transfer the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but failed to live up to that commitment. Congress demanded recognition and transfer but to no avail. President Donald Trump dramatically changed this pattern by recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and ordering that the US embassy be moved there.

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“Sharp Power”: Hamas’s Dirty War Against Israel

| April 17, 2018

In the so-called “March of Return,” Hamas is utilizing a new kind of power in international relations called “sharp power.” This term originally referred to the subversion, manipulation, distraction, and lies authoritarian governments employ to undermine liberal democracies. The concept can now be applied to terrorist organizations like Hamas.

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The American Public and Israel: A Record of Support, but Clouds on the Horizon

| April 2, 2018

The American public has historically strongly supported Israel, especially since the 1967 Six Day War. This support substantially contributed to the establishment and development of a “special relationship” between the two countries. The Gallup Poll, the first and the most reputable polling organization in the US, has been measuring American attitudes towards Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict since before the establishment of Israel. The long-term trends on several issues show constant growth in public support. The 2018 survey reveals record scores in favor of Israel, but also a few weaknesses.   

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The Trump-Kim Jong-un Summit: Nuclear Disarmament for Regime Survival?

| March 19, 2018

Kim Jong-un’s invitation to US President Donald Trump to hold a summit was a big surprise, as was Trump’s immediate acceptance. While the road to a nuclear agreement will be difficult because of two decades of North Korean violations of understandings and agreements, the summit could nevertheless have dramatic ramifications for world and regional politics.

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Trump’s Business Approach to Foreign Aid Diplomacy

| February 7, 2018

Until now, two approaches have dominated American foreign aid: the strategic and the humanitarian. Trump has added a third: the “business approach.” The strategic is based on interests, the humanitarian on compassion, and the business on yield. The great powers use the strategic approach and the Europeans the humanitarian. The business approach now guides US aid to the Palestinians. Trump has threatened to cut off US aid to the Palestinians if they refuse to negotiate with Israel, and cut US allocations to UNRWA. This new approach influences the attitudes of Egypt and Jordan, both large recipients of American aid. This can be seen in their low-key responses to Trump’s Jerusalem decision. It can also have ramifications for Israel’s relations with the Palestinians and the US.

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Trump, One Year After the Election: Achievements and Failures

| November 20, 2017

No president, particularly one lacking experience in politics, can achieve his goals without the cooperation of government authorities, the media, and the public. Thus far, Trump has not demonstrated the ability to learn lessons that will bring him to this place, and his public approval ratings have accordingly plummeted. Should he sustain his erratic conduct, Republicans may well distance themselves from his policies in next year’s midterm congressional elections. This will make it even harder for him to pass laws, budgets, and programs.

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Handling the North Korean Nuclear Challenge

| September 27, 2017

The recent verbal exchanges between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have been among the most belligerent and bellicose to pass between any two major leaders in recent history. The North Korean nuclear crisis now resembles the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis between the US and the Soviet Union. Trump has several options with which to deal with Kim. All are problematic, and a few are truly dangerous.

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In the Aftermath of Trump’s Visit to the Middle East

| June 6, 2017

In his recent visit to the Middle East – his first visit abroad, and one fraught with symbolic messages – President Donald Trump achieved most of his goals. Never has a US president been received with so much tribute, praise, appreciation, and admiration by both Muslim and Jewish leaders. Heads of the most important states in the Arab world lauded his friendship, qualities, and strategic aims. There is no great surprise here. Trump completely reversed the attitude of Obama, which verged on hostility, towards both the pro-American Arab states and Israel. The Saudi royal reception for Trump was a particularly vivid response to Obama’s policy. The huge arms deal Trump signed with Saudi Arabia could challenge Israel’s national security. Trump failed to implement his election promise to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, primarily because it seemed to contradict his plan to engineer an “ultimate deal” between Israel and the Palestinians.

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Donald Trump: The View from Jerusalem

| May 30, 2017

Trump’s first 100 days have yet to provide a clear indication of US policy and how he believes he can achieve an Israel-Palestinian deal. The major changes during this period have occurred in areas mostly relevant to Israel: foreign policy and national security. It will take at least 100 more days to figure out how and where Trump wants to lead the US in the near future.

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