This past week served as a stark reminder that no matter what the world is focused on at any given moment, our adversaries do not relent and there is no lie they will not tell to advance their agenda. Since the most ludicrous item of the week came from Ramallah, let’s start there.
In recent weeks, we’ve seen the results of two diametrically opposite approaches to foreign policy play out. On the one hand, we’ve watched as history was made when the Abraham Accords were signed in Washington. On the other, we’ve seen Lebanon descend even further into chaos with Hezbollah and Iran on the ascendancy.
Regular readers of the Action Update know that Iran’s support for terror is so prevalent that it’s hardly even newsworthy anymore. The same goes for the Islamic Republic’s efforts to develop a nuclear weapon. And sadly, the international community’s weakness in the face of Iranian belligerence hardly warrants a headline these days. But sometimes, the sum of events is greater than the whole of its parts. And over the past week, all of these appalling realities have come into stark relief.
A return to the old nuclear deal is a non-starter, writes CUFI’s policy head: Any agreement with the Tehran regime must be comprehensive, bipartisan and durable. And Biden’s team must be willing to walk away.
Upon taking office, President-elect Joe Biden will be greeted with a Middle East very different from the one he may recall from his days in the White House. Nowhere are these changes more apparent and more important than in the effort to curb Iran’s regional ambitions.
This week’s Action Update is being written just hours after CUFI’s founder and Chairman Pastor John Hagee, the CUFI Action Fund’s Chairwoman Sandra Parker, and several other CUFI staff were at the White House witnessing leaders from Israel, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain signing peace agreements. History is being made, and we’re in the midst of it.
The Mediterranean Sea comprises nearly 1 million square miles of pristine blue waters. Whether you’re sitting on a beach in Tel Aviv or lounging on a coastal Greek balcony, the view is of a magnificent, awe-inspiring expanse, – unless of course you’re Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Edorgan. All he sees is a battlefield. In this week’s Action Update we’re going to go around the Med, starting with the ravings of Turkey’s strongman President and then turning our attention to the latest out of Lebanon.
Earlier this week it was reported that the French Minister of the Armed Forces, said, “Hezbollah is a legitimate political party.” In this week’s Action Update we’ll discuss recent events in Lebanon (spoiler alert: the French are wrong), as well the latest progress to normalize relations between the UAE and Israel.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in the Middle East this week, where he is meeting with leaders in Israel as well as several Arab countries in the hopes of replicating the normalization of relations between the United Arab Emirates and Israel. Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, expressed optimism in in an interview stating that we would soon see other Arab countries choose to join the growing coalition of countries abandoning unnecessary quarrels with the Jewish state and choosing instead to focus on peace and prosperity in the region.
This week’s Action Update could easily be dubbed the good news, bad news edition. Across the Middle East we saw truly historic events – some that fill us with joy, others that cause us to shake our heads in utter disappointment. But let’s start with the good news.
As we were sitting down to write last week’s Action Update, news was just coming out about the blast in Beirut. This week, we’ll share what’s been reported, and what we feel must come in the wake of this horrific tragedy. In addition, we’ll look at broader nuclear proliferation in the Middle East. The common denominator in all these troubling events is, unsurprisingly, the Islamic Republic of Iran.