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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O Ali, O Husayn! An Ancient Shi’ite Paradigm Haunts Today’s Islamic Republic

No. 85
| July 12, 2009

Hatred of, and disdain for, George W. Bush was the European excuse for refusing American requests for diplomatic and military cooperation.
How will Europe, which is in love with Obama, now justify saying no?

Is It Time to Update the 1985 US-Israel Free Trade Agreement, in View of EU Neighborhood Policy?

No. 84
| June 29, 2009

The 25-year-old Israel-US Free Trade Agreement remains solid, and it is not in Israel’s interests to open its terms for renegotiation.

Netanyahu Has Become Mainstream Israel

No. 83
| June 28, 2009

In his diplomatic address at the BESA Center, Netanyahu successfully
redefined the Israeli consensus and became a mainstream political leader.

Netanyahu and Sarkozy: Personal Chemistry Versus Political Disagreements

No. 82
| June 22, 2009

Netanyahu and Sarkozy resemble each other in their charismatic
leadership, their dynamic capitalist approach and their global view of
security threats. But they differ sharply on settlements, Jerusalem, and more.

Too Clever By Half? The Problematics of Demilitarization and Other Shadows in Prime Minister Netanyahu’s BESA Center Speech

No. 81
| June 17, 2009

Netanyahu’s real purpose seems to be procrastination and shifting the onus of progress onto the Palestinians. This strategy could backfire, as other parties fill the diplomatic vacuum with proposals of their own. Netanyahu’s insistence on demilitarization opens the door to demands for mutual demilitarization.

Netanyahu’s Begin-Sadat Center Speech: An Attempt at Consensus Diplomacy

No. 80
| June 15, 2009

The speech represents a political success for Netanyahu, as he managed to improve relations with the US while simultaneously keeping his governing coalition intact. But down the line he will need a national unity government to make difficult decisions on settlements and more.

President Obama’s Cairo Speech: The Question Left Unanswered – Iran

No. 79
| June 9, 2009

Obama’s “soft power” approach cannot form the basis for a sound, workable American strategy in the Middle East. The speech lacked resolve regarding the most urgent problem for Israel and America’s other regional allies – the imminent threat of Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

What About the Jewish Nakba?

No. 78
| May 31, 2009

Jews in Arab countries suffered a catastrophe many times greater than
that of 1948 Palestinian refugees: a Jewish “Nakba” of historic
proportions. But while Jews healed their wounds, Palestinians have
preferred bleeding to rehabilitation and created an industry of lies to
propagate the myth of “Nakba.”

Israel and NATO: A Good Idea Whose Time Will Never Come

No. 77
| May 25, 2009

While Israel is an ideal partner, Israeli membership in NATO will not happen for various reasons. Israel will lose important freedom of action, while the EU and NATO are reluctant to expand into the Middle East.

Elections in Lebanon: A Hizballah Takeover?

No. 76

Hizballah is on a determined path to control Lebanon. The June 2009
parliamentary elections could be a watershed, leading to a result that the West will deeply regret – an Iranian-like regime.