Arabs and Israelis Are Fighting a Common Enemy: The Red Palm Weevil

Feb. 11 2021

While much has been made of how the threat of an ascendant and bellicose Iran has fostered better relations between Israel and several Arab states, there are other shared dangers these former foes can best fight together. Among them is a species of weevil that attacks date palms, which has caused much destruction to Levantine agriculture in the past decade. Matti Friedman recently traveled to the United Arab Emirates—home to some 40 million date palms—in the company of a representative of an Israeli firm that produces high-tech sensors for detecting the pest. He describes the exuberant atmosphere of the journey to a country long closed to Israelis, through the airspace of another country, Saudi Arabia, long closed to their planes:

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Read more at New York Times

More about: Abraham Accords, Israeli agriculture, Israeli technology, Moroccan Jewry, Morocco, United Arab Emirates

Why a Government Victory in Southwestern Syria Is Bad News for Israel

Sept. 17 2021

Last week, Russia negotiated a ceasefire between the Syrian government and rebel forces in the city of Daraa, where the initial protests that sparked the uprising against Bashar al-Assad began. The agreement ended a 75-day assault on the city, located near the country’s southwestern border, by Russian, Iranian, and Syrian forces. Jonathan Spyer explains the significance of these events:

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Read more at Jonathan Spyer

More about: Golan Heights, Iran, Israeli Security, Russia, Syrian civil war