The idea that confronting Iran requires normalisation and an alliance with Israel is purely Israeli in origin and only serves the agenda of the occupation state, which invests all events in the region and, indeed, around the world, with its own best interests. Israel’s most recent success in this regard is its investment in the Sunni-Shia sectarian tension sweeping the Arab region for years and the wave of Arab incitement against Iran, on which some Gulf countries have spent millions — perhaps billions — of dollars.
The notion of an alliance with Israel dupes only the foolish individuals in the Arab world who think that war against Iran requires peace with Israel and normalisation of relations with the occupation state. The truth is that war with Iran is not actually necessary; it is has been re-packaged and sold to us as an unnecessary necessity in the region. However, even if we assume for argument’s sake that such a war is necessary, there is no point in throwing ourselves into Israel’s arms in order to confront the government in Tehran. If Israel could have fought on behalf of anyone, it would have done so in Lebanon, but it has not only abandoned its allies there, it has also abandoned its proxies in Antoine Lahad’s “South Lebanon Army” and did not provide them with protection or care.
Conflicts within the Arab world cannot be solved by an alliance with Israel or normalisation with it. Israel either deepens and affects these conflicts negatively, or does not influence them at all; it is impossible for it to have a positive impact. Arab rulers and politicians are probably aware of this fact, but they are still crawling on hands and knees to Tel Aviv and are desperate to appease the Zionist state because they are not elected and have no popular legitimacy in their own countries, so they look for Israeli satisfaction and American support and nothing more.
The latest scandal of the Arabs throwing themselves into Israel’s embrace was a clandestine conference in the occupied city of Jerusalem, attended by Arab and Kurdish academics, researchers and politicians at the invitation of an Israeli research centre. The conference topic was “The choice of confederations in the Middle East to confront the Turkish and Iranian threat”. According to the Israeli media, participants discussed the idea of a confederation bringing together Jordan and Israel, and another joining Iraq and Syria. The stated aim of this is, of course, to confront Iran and Turkey. Among the participants was a well-known Syrian dissident who has always appeared on Arab satellite channels delivering speeches about the revolution and the need to overthrow authoritarian and oppressive regimes.
Israel is investing in and utilising the sectarian tension across the Arab region, and it gains the most from the incitement and mobilisation against Iran, which has gone on for several years. The government in Tel Aviv is now promoting the idea that has become popular among a large number of foolish Arabs — Iran is more of a threat to them than Israel — as if the Arabs have to pick one or the other, and that they must choose Iran, not Israel.
During the years of incitement and mobilisation against Iran in the Arab world, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has visited one of the Gulf capitals; two Israeli ministers visited another Gulf capital within one month; a sports team visited yet another Gulf capital; and a senior official in a fourth Gulf country visited Tel Aviv. Throughout all of these events, there was always one foolish Arab voice proclaiming loudly that, “Iran is more dangerous than Israel.” If we were to accept the validity of this stupid statement, why does it mean that we should seek full normalisation of our relations with Israel?
The bottom line is that Israel benefits the most from the frenzied wave of sectarian incitement that the Arab world has been witnessing for years, and it is the biggest beneficiary of the failed proxy wars that the Arabs are waging against Iran and its allies. Indeed, Israel is seeing stupid people in the Arab world rushing into its arms under the pretext of fighting Iran. Wake up; why is normalisation with Israel useful in any way against Iran?
Translated from Al Quds Al Arabi, 14 January 2019
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.