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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The Road to an Iranian Attack on Israel

No. 1345
| November 15, 2019

Israeli political and military leaders have warned against the possibility of a major military confrontation with Iran, which wants to deter Israel from disrupting its attempts to build military bases in Syria and Iraq and to construct factories in which Hezbollah can convert its huge arsenal of rockets into accurate missiles. This threat is more acute in light of the American failure to respond to recent Iranian provocations in the Gulf. Israel should adopt an aggressive new strategic approach to meet this threat, in coordination with the US and in consultation with Russia.     

Israel Faces Unprecedented Security Threats

No. 1343
| November 14, 2019

The unprecedented convergence of strategic threats now taking shape under Iran’s inspiration and guidance requires the IDF to adopt a new operational approach without delay (including a reorganization and a suitable buildup) and the Israeli public to prepare for the emergency situations attending these new emergent threats.

Lessons of the Gaza Conflagration

No. 1344
| November 14, 2019

The latest flare-up in Gaza – a direct corollary of the Oslo Accords and the 2005 unilateral withdrawal from the Strip – is a sad testament to the limits of Israeli power and a forewarning against repeating the same mistakes in the West Bank.

Gaza Conflagration Highlights the Differences between Hamas and Islamic Jihad

No. 1342
| November 13, 2019

Unlike Islamic Jihad, both Hamas and Israel have an interest in keeping the present round of hostilities short. The question is whether in the fog of battle, the two sides will succeed in achieving their mutual goal.

Lebanese and Iraqi Protesters Transcend Sectarianism

No. 1341
| November 12, 2019

The protests in Lebanon have evolved into more than a fight against a failed and corrupt government. They constitute a rare demand for political and social structures that emphasize national rather than ethnic or sectarian religious identities in a world in which civilizational leaders who advocate some form of racial, ethnic, or religious supremacy govern the world’s major as well as key regional powers.

Israel Agrees to Monitor Foreign Investment

No. 1340
| November 11, 2019

Jerusalem and Beijing have cultivated a flourishing economic relationship in recent years, but that bond is limited by the tension it has engendered with a Washington wary of China’s growing footprint in Israeli strategic assets. In an effort to mitigate this tension, Israel’s security cabinet has decided to establish a mechanism to monitor foreign investment.

China in the Middle East: From Observer to Security Player

No. 1339
| November 10, 2019

There is much debate both within and without China over whether or not its economic interests in the region will force it to play a more active security/military role in the Middle East. In fact, recent political and economic trends in the region indicate that a shift in China’s approach to the Middle East along these lines has already started.  

The Failed Halle Synagogue Massacre Reveals the Dysfunction of German Law

No. 1338
| November 7, 2019

The failed attack on the synagogue in the German town of Halle on the holiest day of the Jewish year, Yom Kippur, once again exposed the dysfunction of the law in the German liberal democracy. Efforts were made to draw attention away from the shortcomings of the police and authorities by blaming the German right-wing party, AfD. This backfired when an AfD parliamentarian exposed huge government shortcomings in the battle against extremists as well as anti-Israelism in mainstream German society.

Palestinian Islamic Jihad Agitates for Violence in the Gaza Strip

No. 1337
| November 6, 2019

Israel seeks to prevent a powder keg from detonating on the southern border as it prioritizes the more threatening front up north.

It’s Time to Close Down UNRWA

No. 1336
| November 5, 2019

UNRWA, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, was created in 1949 via UN Resolution 302 (IV) with a short-term mandate. It flouted its original mission and perpetuated rather than alleviated the Palestinians’ status as refugees. It has long since become corrupt and functions essentially as a front group. The UN should close it down, and Palestinian refugees should be integrated into the economic systems of the countries that sheltered them.