Two weeks ago, Jerusalem and Ankara announced the resumption of full diplomatic ties, which were severed in 2018. Brenda Shaffer examines the rapprochement from an American perspective:
Washington stands to gain by having two of its regional allies end a yearslong discord in the strategically important east Mediterranean basin, which is a flashpoint of strategic competition between the United States and Russia. Most of the countries around the east Mediterranean basin are U.S. allies, and thus it is in Washington’s strategic interest when its allies work together. Reduced tensions between Turkey and Israel also mean and that Washington does not need to waste time mitigating a conflict between its allies.
The change in relations between Turkey and Israel is also likely to project onto the situation in Syria—where both seek stability given their borders with that country. Both Israel and Ankara would like to see Iranian military units removed from Syria, or at least a reduced presence. Iran is clearly unhappy about the open cooperation between Turkey and Israel.
In contrast, Azerbaijan’s strategic situation is greatly improved by the reconciliation of its two closest allies. President Ilham Aliyev played a major role in the normalization process. Turkish-Israeli cooperation before and during the 2020 Azerbaijan-Armenia war also contributed to the return of cooperative relations between Ankara and Jerusalem. Azerbaijan’s triumph in the war represented a knockout victory for Western arms technology in the clash between Russian-produced systems used by Armenia, on one hand, and those of the NATO member Turkey and the U.S. ally Israel, on the other.