2021 Strategic Overview: Vaccines and Vacillations

January 26, 2021

From the Tel Aviv based, INSS, The Institute for National Security Studies, their annual review of Israel's domestic and foreign policy challenges is available. Released by one of Israel's most prestigious think tanks, their 2021 Strategic Overview contains more than a dozen thoroughly researched topics. This publication has no peer for excellence and analyses. Its authors are highly respected for their competence in respective fields of specialty, and in the coherence that each of them brings to their essays.

Accessible Sources for Understanding Zionism to 1949

January 3, 2021

Modern Zionism to 1949 Learning about modern Jewish history, Israel and the Middle East can be daunting. Whether student or teacher, Jew or non-Jew, knowing what sources to trust and where to find them can be overwhelming, given the number of blogs, organizations, websites, and individuals who claim their views are the most relevant, salient, […]

Why learning about Israel matters

December 23, 2020

Whether you are Jewish or non-Jewish, knowing and familiarizing yourself with the history and future of Israel is about knowing your unique origins.

Hannukah: Predictions, Politics, the Pandemic, and Accountability

December 10, 2020

Do you think any of the Maccabees would have guessed that the one jar of oil would have kept the menorah burning in Mod’in for eight days rather than one? If one had predicted yes or no, there probably would not have been either good or bad consequences in the years after 165 BCE. 

Sadat’s Leadership: Lessons for the Palestinians?

November 25, 2020

Ken Stein Leadership is about knowing your objectives and adjusting and implementing the tactics to accomplish them. Leadership is also about choices and consequences. It is about making political trade-offs.  November 2020 marks the 43th anniversary of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat’s visit to Jerusalem and his historic speech to the Israeli Parliament.  Those were heady […]

From Balfour to Begin 1917 – 1977

November 19, 2020

Ken Stein Coincidently during the month of November, occurring over a sixty year period, four important benchmarks were passed in Zionist history and the Jewish quest for statehood and recognition: The 1917 Balfour Declaration,  1947 UN Partition Resolution, 1967 United Nations Resolution 242, and Menachem Begin’s 1977 Knesset speech responding to Egyptian President Sadat’s historic visit […]

Yitzhak Rabin: Israel Leadership in a Lifetime

November 14, 2020

Yitzhak Rabin’s life story, in the words of former Knesset member Nachman Shai, is “the story of the State of Israel.” He fought to create and defend it in 1948 and 1967, represented it in Washington, led it twice as prime minister, liberated Jews from captivity in 1945 and 1976, and embraced an opportunity for a chance at a longtime peace with the Palestinians in 1993. Rabin possessed essential qualities of an admired leader: credible, authentic, honest, visionary, and strategic. In addition, Rabin was taciturn, incisive, and suffered no fools. For a lifetime, he put the Jewish people on his shoulders as defender and diplomat.

Interviews with Saudi Prince Bandar Bin Sultan on Arab world and Palestinian leaders

October 16, 2020

Bandar Bin Sultan was Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the United States from 1983-2005. He served as director general of the Saudi Intelligence Agency from 2012 to 2014 and the head of the National Security Council from 2005 to 2015. All rights to this article belong to Al-Arabiya; the interviews are provided by permission of the Al-Arabiya.

Constructive Ambiguity in Middle East Peacemaking

October 15, 2020

Constructive ambiguity is a concept sometimes utilized in international negotiations to overcome remaining, unresolved issues. In such cases, parties agree to adopt a word or an expression that is so ambiguous they can both accept it—typically allowing them to reach an agreement without departing from their original, contradictory positions on certain contentious issues. This article describes instances in Arab-Israeli relations in which fundamental disagreements between the parties have been resolved—in fact, papered over—through constructive ambiguity.

The Abraham Accords- US, UAE, Israel and Bahrain

September 27, 2020

Quietly pursued over the past decade or more, long-standing ties between Israel and Gulf states have become public, based on national interests, with speculation that adversial relations could move into some loose regional alliance system. Building on the historic Joint Agreement signed between Israel and the UAE in August 2020, the Abraham Accords are a framework for normalizing diplomatic relations between Israel, the UAE and Bahrain; noticeably, they are not based on first resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Israel and the Arab World: Breaking the Glass Ceiling

September 25, 2020

Six weeks before the UAE and Israel announced their mutual recognition in August 2020, Tel Aviv University Professor Eyal Zisser published a comprehensive perspective defining the compatible national interests for Arab state and Israeli mutual cooperation. Then resolving the Palestinian issue was still considered the key blockage to entrenching those ties publically. That obstacle was removed with the signing of the September 15, 2020 Bahrain-Israel-UAE Agreement.

Israelis Pessimistic on the Country’s Outlook but Hopeful on Peace with UAE

September 8, 2020

As the new year approaches, two-thirds of those interviewed described the public mood in Israel as pessimistic and a fourth as optimistic. There is skepticism about the country’s collective mood but personally the public is optimistic about the future. Two-third of Israelis think that there is a high or very high chance that there will be new elections in four months. (Published with Courtesy of the Guttman Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research at the Israel Democracy Institute, 2020).