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Today's Mideast Mirror Summaries

From Today's Israeli Press

 

STRATEGIC PATIENCE

IRAN WILL AVENGE: Dr. Tamar Eilam Gindin writes in Israel Hayom that the regime in Tehran is citing "strategic patience" as an excuse for dawdling, and does not want to drag the region into war, but will be forced to take action to avoid seeming weak.

CIVIL SUPPORT FOR NUKES GROWS IN IRAN: Prof. Ronen A. Cohen claims in Walla! that uppermost on the minds of Iranian citizens is the economic situation and the coronavirus crisis.

THE AFRICAN DUBAI: Ehud Yaari argues in N12 that despite the Red Sea region's vital importance to Israel's national interest due to Iranian control of the Bab al-Mandeb strait, not enough is being done to normalize relations with Djibouti, the smallest and poorest member of the Arab League.

THE RAHM EMANUEL SYNDROME: Shlomo Pyoterkovski asserts in Makor Rishon that many U.S. Jews feel a sense of shared destiny with Israel, but the emotional connection is translated into a tendency for patronage toward Israel.

JUSTIFIED, BUT NOT WISE: Chuck Freilich proclaims in Haaretz that when Israel weighed up the targeted killing of Fakhrizadeh, there were ten criteria it should have considered. Instead it appears that Netanyahu chose a strike of marginal tactical importance over far bigger strategic gains.

ISRAELI/TURKISH NORMALIZATION: Seth J. Frantzman contends in The Jerusalem Post that Turkey wants to use Israel to escape isolation from Washington.

 

From Today's Arabic Press

 

KUSHNER'S FINAL VISIT

OUT OF THE LIMELIGHT: President Trump's son-in-law and envoy Jared Kushner will be undertaking a final visit to the Gulf with the reported mission of reconciling between Riyadh and Doha, notes Editor-in-Chief 'Abdelbari 'Atwan on Tuesday's London-based, pan-Arab www.raialyoum.com. But there is no reason why Saudi Arabia or Qatar would be prepared to offer this gift to the outgoing administration, and the visit's most likely purpose is to consolidate Arab/Israeli normalization and prepare the grounds for further aggression against Iran, while furthering Kushner and his father-in-law's personal and financial interests.

CALCULATED RESPONSES, INFILTRATION, AND 'GOOD COP, BAD COP': Chief Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh's assassination raises much speculation as to the extent of Israel's ability to recruit agents and carry out covert operations throughout the Arab and Muslim world, with Iran as no exception, notes Maher Abu-Tayr in Tuesday's Amman daily al-Ghad. Nonetheless, Iran is very unlikely to respond with any major action at this particular action, and its nuclear project will proceed regardless of Fakhrizadeh's loss.

FINGER OF BLAME: Israel has repeatedly demonstrated its intelligence service's ability to strike at its enemies, maintains Hussein Shibakshi in Tuesday's Saudi daily Asharq al-Awsat. But its previous image as a David surrounded by Arab Goliaths has faded since1967, and its famed Mossad has been revealed to be less than competent on more than one occasion, except in the case of fragile regimes such as Iran.

OBSTRUCTING BIDEN: There is some question as to whether Israel's actions in assassinating Fakhrizadeh may have alienated the Biden administration in its professed intention to return to the 2015 nuclear deal, writes Lebanese commentator Walid Sharara in the left-leaning pro-Hezbollah Beirut daily al-Akhbar. However, Israeli leaders are profoundly aware of their vital relations with Washington, and Biden's team, including VP Harris and designated Secretary of State Blinken, are deeply committed to the Zionist state, leading to the conclusion that Israel is playing the 'bad cop' role so as to pave the way for Iranian concessions should Biden return to the Iran nuclear deal.

POMPEO'S DECEPTION: U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo's November visit to the area is of greater import than may appear at first glance, maintains Walid Salem on the PCI (Palestinian citizens of Israel) focused news portal Arab 48. By agreeing to label all Area C products as 'Israeli', Pompeo effectively ceded 60% of the West Bank to Israel in a move that may be intended to bolster his presidential aspirations and that appears to conflict with Arab claims of foiling Israel's annexation plans; meanwhile, Israel's creeping annexation continues apace, posing a challenge to both the Palestinian side and the incoming Biden administration.