Among the factors contributing to the current parliamentary deadlock in the Jewish state is that Bezalel Smotrich, head of the newly formed Religious Zionist Party, refuses to sit in the same government as Mansour Abbas’s Islamist Ra’am party, noting that Ra’am’s 2018 charter calls Zionism “a racist, occupying project.” Daniel Pipes sees a clear, if unlikely, solution: Abbas can reform his party’s platform so as to recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state, and in exchange Smotrich can back down. Moreover, Abbas can do so while remaining true to his principles:
Can the Quran Solve Israel’s Political Impasse?
Why a Government Victory in Southwestern Syria Is Bad News for Israel
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: