The Roman Empire’s Religious War against the Jews

Now that Shavuot is passed, the next notable day on the Hebrew calendar is the fast of the seventeenth of Tammuz, which commemorates, inter alia, the breach of the walls of Jerusalem by Roman legionaries in 70 CE, which in turn led to the destruction of the Second Temple and the defeat of the great Judean Revolt. As Guy MacLean Rogers explains in conversation with Aaron MacLean, the so-called “Jewish War” was an event of enormous significance not only for the Jews, but also for the Romans: it represented, in Roman eyes, a victory of paganism over monotheism; it also became a source of legitimacy for the Flavian dynasty that ruled the empire for three decades. The two also discuss the military dimensions of the campaign. (Audio, 69 minutes.)

Read more at School of War

More about: Ancient Israel, Ancient Rome, Jerusalem, Judean Revolt

Strengthening the Abraham Accords at Sea

In an age of jet planes, high-speed trains, electric cars, and instant communication, it’s easy to forget that maritime trade is, according to Yuval Eylon, more important than ever. As a result, maritime security is also more important than ever. Eylon examines the threats, and opportunities, these realities present to Israel:

Freedom of navigation in the Middle East is challenged by Iran and its proxies, which operate in the Red Sea, the Arabian Sea, and the Persian Gulf, and recently in the Mediterranean Sea as well. . . . A bill submitted to the U.S. Congress calls for the formulation of a naval strategy that includes an alliance to combat naval terrorism in the Middle East. This proposal suggests the formation of a regional alliance in the Middle East in which the member states will support the realization of U.S. interests—even while the United States focuses its attention on other regions of the world, mainly the Far East.

Israel could play a significant role in the execution of this strategy. The Abraham Accords, along with the transition of U.S.-Israeli military cooperation from the European Command (EUCOM) to Central Command (CENTCOM), position Israel to be a key player in the establishment of a naval alliance, led by the U.S. Fifth Fleet, headquartered in Bahrain.

Collaborative maritime diplomacy and coalition building will convey a message of unity among the members of the alliance, while strengthening state commitments. The advantage of naval operations is that they enable collaboration without actually threatening the territory of any sovereign state, but rather using international waters, enhancing trust among all members.

Read more at Institute for National Security Studies

More about: Abraham Accords, Iran, Israeli Security, Naval strategy, U.S. Foreign policy