What Azerbaijan’s Alliance with the West, and with Israel, Can Accomplish

A predominantly Shiite Muslim country, bordering Russia to its north and Iran to its south, Azerbaijan established bilateral relations with Israel in the first year of its independence from the Soviet Union. Ayoob Kara explains the important role this small country can play in support of the free world, especially given the looming shortages of fuel and basic foodstuffs:

In recent days, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard launched a large-scale military drill along the Azerbaijan-Armenia border in an attempt to sabotage the fragile peace between the two countries. They are doing so because, for quite some time, Azerbaijan has helped the U.S. and Israel thwart regional terrorism—including terrorism sponsored by Iran—which threatens the entire Middle East. As a result, Iran has been using the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia to weaken Azerbaijan’s position in the West.

Anyone who cares about the future of Western civilization should not let that happen. . . . Israel has already vowed to provide Azerbaijan with the technical assistance it needs to engage in mass cultivation of wheat. It also held a three-day conference designed to showcase technology that can address problems of food security, which was attended by Azerbaijan’s deputy minister of agriculture.

Azerbaijan recently signed a memorandum of understanding with the EU that will supply the Europeans with at least 20 billion cubic meters of gas by 2027 via a future southern gas corridor. In the wake of the war in Ukraine, the EU needs reliable energy partners and it believes that Azerbaijan is such a partner, especially because the country’s economic freedom, pro-Western orientation, and positive atmosphere for religious minorities are very much in accordance with American and European values.

Read more at JNS

More about: Azerbaijan, Iran, U.S. Foreign policy, War in Ukraine

Universities Are in Thrall to a Constituency That Sees Israel as an Affront to Its Identity

Commenting on the hearings of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce on Tuesday about anti-Semitism on college campuses, and the dismaying testimony of three university presidents, Jonah Goldberg writes:

If some retrograde poltroon called for lynching black people or, heck, if they simply used the wrong adjective to describe black people, the all-seeing panopticon would spot it and deploy whatever resources were required to deal with the problem. If the spark of intolerance flickered even for a moment and offended the transgendered, the Muslim, the neurodivergent, or whomever, the fire-suppression systems would rain down the retardant foams of justice and enlightenment. But calls for liquidating the Jews? Those reside outside the sensory spectrum of the system.

It’s ironic that the term colorblind is “problematic” for these institutions such that the monitoring systems will spot any hint of it, in or out of the classroom (or admissions!). But actual intolerance for Jews is lathered with a kind of stealth paint that renders the same systems Jew-blind.

I can understand the predicament. The receptors on the Islamophobia sensors have been set to 11 for so long, a constituency has built up around it. This constituency—which is multi-ethnic, non-denominational, and well entrenched among students, administrators, and faculty alike—sees Israel and the non-Israeli Jews who tolerate its existence as an affront to their worldview and Muslim “identity.” . . . Blaming the Jews for all manner of evils, including the shortcomings of the people who scapegoat Jews, is protected because, at minimum, it’s a “personal truth,” and for some just the plain truth. But taking offense at such things is evidence of a mulish inability to understand the “context.”

Shocking as all that is, Goldberg goes on to argue, the anti-Semitism is merely a “symptom” of the insidious ideology that has taken over much of the universities as well as an important segment of the hard left. And Jews make the easiest targets.

Read more at Dispatch

More about: Anti-Semitism, Israel on campus, University