America Should Strengthen Its Military Alliance with Israel

James Stavridis, a retired general who worked extensively with the IDF while serving as head of the U.S. European Command, argues for a broadening of the already extensive strategic ties between the two countries:

[America’s] best military partner in the region, by far, is Israel. . . . The U.S. would be well served to develop more fully its partnership with the Israel Defense Forces in several crucial areas as we stand together facing the challenges of the Middle East. . . . Perhaps the most important area of potential cooperation is in the world of cybersecurity. Israeli intelligence gathering is superb, and the integration of the Israeli military with the nation’s robust private-sector security firms is nearly seamless. Israel is also ahead of the U.S. in bringing advancements from the private sector into public hands; the brightest people constantly flow between the military and civilian spheres. . . .

[In addition], we should up our game in terms of intelligence cooperation. The Israeli military and the associated Israeli intelligence services Mossad, Aman, and Shin Bet are the best in the Middle East. Working together, they have been ahead of our more segregated sectors on a wide range of trends, including the disintegration of Syria, the events in Egypt, and the military and nuclear capability of Iran. Here we need a more open exchange of information between our two countries (especially human intelligence from Israel and overhead-sensor data from the U.S.). More liaison officers between military and intelligence commands would help, as would more frequent conferences and dialogue on principles. . . .

For the U.S. in the complex Middle East, we would be well served to follow the Israeli military’s advice on a range of key issues.

Read more at Time

More about: Cyberwarfare, IDF, Israel & Zionism, U.S. Foreign policy, U.S. military, US-Israel relations

Israel Has Survived Eight Years of Barack Obama’s False Friendship

Jan. 20 2017

In his speech justifying America’s decision to allow passage of the UN Security Council resolution declaring it a violation of international law for Jews to live in east Jerusalem, the West Bank, or the Golan Heights, Secretary of State John Kerry declared that “friends need to tell each other the hard truths.” John Podhoretz comments:

The decision in December by President Obama to abstain on the UN Security Council vote . . . marked the moment he crossed the finish line in the course he had charted from 2008 onward. The turn against Israel was complete. And, as he had when he began it, in farewell interview after farewell interview he characterized his assault on the legitimacy of the Jewish presence in the Holy Land as an act of tough love. . . .

Which raises the key question: why [only] abstain [from the resolution]? If “hard truths” define friendship, then by all means they should have made the truths as hard as possible. If Barack Obama and John Kerry truly believe the Jewish presence in east Jerusalem is illicit, then they should have voted for the resolution. Instead, they took the coward’s way out. They opened the vault to the criminals and placed the jewels in their hands while wearing white gloves so there would be no residual trace of their fingerprints. The abstention was in some weird sense the mark of their bad conscience. They wanted something to happen while maintaining some historical deniability about their involvement in it.

In the eight years of the Obama presidency, war broke out twice between the Palestinians and the Israelis and nearly broke out a third time. In each case, the issue was not the West Bank, or east Jerusalem, or anything near. . . . The idea that the settlements and the Jewish presence in East Jerusalem are the main barrier to peace between Israel and the Palestinians was proved to be a lie right before Obama’s eyes in 2009, and 2012, and 2014. And he didn’t care to see it, because he is blinded by an antipathy he wishes to ascribe to Israeli action when honesty would compel him to find it in his own misguided leftist ideology—or within his own soul.

Israel has survived the horrendous blessing of Barack Obama’s false friendship.

Read more at Commentary

More about: Barack Obama, Israel & Zionism, John Kerry, U.S. Foreign policy, US-Israel relations