Ed: 42: November/2017
To some extent, this memoir seems to be more about settling scores than anything else - getting even with Israel, but mostly with AIJAC...
Israel has said it will prevent ISIS operating close to its border. Both the Islamic State-affiliated Khalid ibn al-Walid Army and the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, formerly the al-Nusra Front, linked to al-Qaeda, already reportedly have a presence close to Israel's Golan borders.
Lowy Institute analyst Rodger Shanahan bizarrely argued that "much of Iran's attraction in the Arab world is the result of discriminatory policies towards Shia populations in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, or the unwillingness of Arab states... to compete diplomatically or economically with Iran..."
Since the 1979 Iranian revolution the regime has run a foreign policy based on exporting its radical anti-Western pro-Shi'ite Islamism to the rest of the region. It has everything to do with Iran's hegemonic ambition for Iranian-led Shi'ite Islam to overwhelm the majority Sunni strand. It is therefore not popular, but overwhelmingly unpopular, among Sunni Arabs - that is, most Arabs.
Given the Revolutionary Guard's pervasive role in the Iranian economy, any company doing business with Iran runs the risk of violating this new designation.
A consistent Palestinian strategy for seeking statehood while blaming Israel for its absence has been codified through the narrative of "occupation." The anniversary of the 1967 war brought this to the forefront in endless accusations regarding the Israeli "occupation" of the West Bank. There is even an assertion that Gaza is still "occupied."
In a historic reawakening, Iran is once again meddling in the internal affairs of the Palestinians. This does not bode well for the future of "reconciliation" between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority's (PA) Fatah faction run by PA President Mahmoud Abbas. The re-emergence of Iran, as it pursues its efforts to increase its political and military presence in the region, does not bode well for the future of stability in the Middle East.
With the looming defeat of ISIS, and with many of the surviving fighters unable to return to their homes, the question arises as to where the remaining ISIS fighters will scatter as they look for safe havens and attempt to rebuild a territorial stronghold.
The death in Marawi of the top two leaders of the Islamic State-aligned forces in Southeast Asia was a significant achievement for the Philippines military. However, few believe it will end Islamist terrorism in the southern Philippines and neighbouring regions, as the remnants of the Marawi campaign scatter to remote areas to reconvene and reorganise.
The evidence is mounting that Iran is not only violating the spirit of the no-nukes deal, but that it is also violating its letter. The prologue to the deal explicitly states: "Iran reaffirms that under no circumstances will Iran ever seek, develop or acquire any nuclear weapons." This reaffirmation has no sunset provision: it is supposed to be forever.
Israel has not yet clearly reacted to the elections in Austria that will likely catapult the far-right Freedom Party into the government, but this outcome poses a clear challenge to Jerusalem: Should it engage with European far-right parties if they become a part of a government?