Thanks to the Abraham Accords, Jordan and Israel Are Concluding a Solar-Energy and Water Deal

Accompanying Israel’s normalization agreements with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain has been much hope that these would usher in something more robust than the “cold peace” resulting from Israel’s peace treaties with Egypt (1977) and Jordan (1994), which have brought out-of-the-spotlight security and intelligence cooperation, but not much in the way of economic or cultural exchange. Not only have the events of the past year suggested that such hope was merited, but now there is also reason to believe that the Abraham Accords are helping to expand the relationship between Amman and Jerusalem. Lahav Harkov reports:

Israel and Jordan are set next week to sign a cooperation agreement in the areas of energy and water in the United Arab Emirates, which helped to mediate the agreement. The agreement states that Israel and Jordan will help each other deal with the challenges of climate change.

Israel agreed to examine the possible construction of a designated desalination plant to export more water to Jordan at full price, and Jordan will consider building a solar field in the desert in Jordan to export clean energy to Israel, which lacks open space, and to test solar-energy storage solutions.

The energy agreement is based on the Water and Energy Nexus, a project of EcoPeace Middle East, which brings together Israeli, Palestinian, and Jordanian environmental experts and activists.

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Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Abraham Accords, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Water

 

As Vladimir Putin Sidles Up to the Mullahs, the Threat to the U.S. and Israel Grows

On Tuesday, Russia launched an Iranian surveillance satellite into space, which the Islamic Republic will undoubtedly use to increase the precision of its military operations against its enemies. The launch is one of many indications that the longstanding alliance between Moscow and Tehran has been growing stronger and deeper since the Kremlin’s escalation in Ukraine in February. Nicholas Carl, Kitaneh Fitzpatrick, and Katherine Lawlor write:

Presidents Vladimir Putin and Ebrahim Raisi have spoken at least four times since the invasion began—more than either individual has engaged most other world leaders. Putin visited Tehran in July 2022, marking his first foreign travel outside the territory of the former Soviet Union since the war began. These interactions reflect a deepening and potentially more balanced relationship wherein Russia is no longer the dominant party. This partnership will likely challenge U.S. and allied interests in Europe, the Middle East, and around the globe.

Tehran has traditionally sought to purchase military technologies from Moscow rather than the inverse. The Kremlin fielding Iranian drones in Ukraine will showcase these platforms to other potential international buyers, further benefitting Iran. Furthermore, Russia has previously tried to limit Iranian influence in Syria but is now enabling its expansion.

Deepening Russo-Iranian ties will almost certainly threaten U.S. and allied interests in Europe, the Middle East, and around the globe. Iranian material support to Russia may help the Kremlin achieve some of its military objectives in Ukraine and eastern Europe. Russian support of Iran’s nascent military space program and air force could improve Iranian targeting and increase the threat it poses to the U.S. and its partners in the Middle East. Growing Iranian control and influence in Syria will enable the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps [to use its forces in that country] to threaten U.S. military bases in the Middle East and our regional partners, such as Israel and Turkey, more effectively. Finally, Moscow and Tehran will likely leverage their deepening economic ties to mitigate U.S. sanctions.

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Read more at Critical Threats

More about: Iran, Israeli Security, Russia, U.S. Security, Vladimir Putin