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Israel to defend Jordan if ISIS attacks

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) will not be content with occupying only parts of Iraq; it is looking to take over Jordan, high-level officials in the administration of US President Barack Obama said during a secret meeting last week.

According to the US website the Daily Beast, if Jordan feels threatened it would enlist the help of the United States and Israel.

Israeli diplomats told their American counterparts that Israel would be willing to launch a military operation “in order to save the Kingdom of Jordan”.

On Sunday, Israeli newspaper Haaretz said: “Israeli security sources have confirmed that Benjamin Netanyahu’s government is aware of the Hashemite Kingdom’s concerns and is assisting through various channels according to need.

“But the Israelis are not expecting a flare-up that could drag them into the mix in the near future.”

The international media has reported that Israel is supplying Jordan with intelligence and that Israeli drones have carried out sorties over the Jordanian-Syrian border in order to assist Jordan in thwarting potential attacks from the north, either by the rebels in Syria or by the Syrian army.

The newspaper added: “Jordan relies mainly on the United States for its security. Even now, roughly half the United States’ F-16 fighter squadrons are stationed in Jordan, along with another thousand or so U.S. military personnel. The American contingent is meant to be a kind of logistical first strike team on the Syria-Jordanian border if one is required.”

The attention is now moving to Iraq, in the wake of the takeover of the elements of ISIS and the threat from leaders of the radical Islamic organisation to invade Jordan and attack the Jordanian king.

The newspaper said that in the light of these developments, Jordan may want Israeli assistance. But, “any requests to that end will be made with a much lower profile so as not to stir condemnation from the rest of the Arab world for being an ally of Israel.”

Haaretz‘s military analyst Amos Harel said: “Renewed fighting in Iraq is changing the regional balance of power, perhaps creating a window for temporary alliances based on common interests.”

He went on to explain: “It seems Jordan and Israel are monitoring the situation in Iraq with angst. The constant turmoil in the region has led to the creation of all sorts of strange alliances, even if they’re only partial and temporary.”

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