A well-known and prestigious Israeli magazine specialising in military affairs recently confirmed that the current Gulf crisis would end with major Israeli gains, exactly like the gains Tel Aviv obtained from the September 11 2001 attacks.
The magazine also considered the escalation of the political conflict in the region as a justification for more rapprochements between Israel and the Western countries that want a stable ally in the region that would look out for their interests. Israel undoubtedly is benefiting from the current Gulf crisis, and it has and continues to benefit from the complete deterioration of the state in Syria and the heated conflict in the region for years. Israel is also benefitting from the depletion battles that the Egyptian army is fighting against the terrorism in Sinai because these battles alone ensure combatting the terrorists and exhaustion of the largest Arab army at the same time. Meanwhile, Israel does not need to fire a single shot in these battles and conflicts.
For the past six years, Israel has silently watched the Arab world and watched from afar the developments occurring in the region. It is also benefitting in an unprecedented manner from these conflicts and tensions, starting with the sectarian tension that has divided the Muslim nation into two teams, each of which ignoring the Quranic verse: “And indeed this, your religion, is one religion, and I am your Lord, so fear Me,” and not ending with a number of Arab countries being dismantled and divided, each part fighting against the other.
There is no doubt that Israel benefits the most from the crises witnessed in the Arab region and there is no doubt that the Arabs are in their worst state because of these crises and because of the counter-revolutions that emerged on the ruins of the Arab Spring revolutions. It became apparent that those who organised these counter-revolutions were more capable of work, organisation and spending, and therefore they were more able to turn back the hands of time. This prevented the achievement of change for the better, which what the Arabs had hoped to achieve through their revolutions at the beginning of this decade.
There are a number of statements and signs from Israel regarding its satisfaction and joy with the conflicts experienced by the Arab world, but it is certain that Israel is benefitting from the current situation in the Arab world in the following manner:
First, the new Gulf crisis means that the Arab economic and financial weight is currently preoccupied and there is a new kind of burden after years of neutralising the political weight represented by Egypt and the military weight represented by Syria and Iraq. Therefore, the entire Arab world no longer exists for Israel and has become nothing more than population groups unable to impact Israel in any shape or form.
Second, the successive crises and armed conflicts in the Arab world have pushed the Palestinian cause to the back seat on an unprecedented level within the Arab public and diplomacy. This means that the Palestinians are ultimately on their own now and this explains, to a great extent, how and why the political process between the Palestinians and Israel has not made any progress for years.
Third, in the event that any conflict or disagreement arises between the Arabs and Israel later, or in the event that Israel wages a new war on the Palestinians, it will be facing a fragmented and torn Arab nation unable even to engage in a diplomatic battle in the international arena. Moreover, the Palestinians will not receive the great support they used to receive in the past, which had been an important reason for their survival in the face of Israeli operations.
Fourth, Israel wants to promote itself in the world as the stable state and the most appropriate ally for the West. Therefore, it will succeed in making closer ties with Western countries, especially if the crisis in the Gulf region escalates and has a greater and deeper impact than in the past.
In short, the Arab world is living its worst days, and its traditional and major political, economic and military forces are absent due to their engagement in various conflicts. Only Israel is enjoying this miserable situation and is benefitting from it. They are the only ones who find themselves living their best days in this inflamed region.
The Arab world needs a comprehensive reconciliation including the big and small states in it, and this reconciliation needs leaders who have a desire to achieve it. They must then hold an extraordinary Arab summit, in which they settle their differences, end their conflicts and spare their peoples the catastrophes. If this does not occur, then only Israel will benefit and the entire Arab nation will lose and pay the price.
Translated from Al-Quds Al-Arabi, 13 June 2017
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.