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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 3/3/11

Israel: Adapt to the New Middle East or Face Isolation, Exclusion, Marginalization

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Message Michael Payne



Israel just recently lost its only real friend in the Middle East; no, not the Egyptian people but, rather, the dictator Hosni Mubarak. Change is in the air, the long reign of ruthless dictators is rapidly ending. The transformation of the Middle East has generated a momentum that cannot be stopped nor suppressed as the people have tasted the beginnings of freedom. Israel's leaders must adapt to these changes or they will find that this historic turn of events will not bode well for the future of their nation.


Israel and its leaders have been largely silent during this Middle East revolutionary process. They are, no doubt, in a state of uncertainty as they watch nation after nation bend to the demands of the people for a representative form of government. They need to see the handwriting on the wall that clearly indicates that this is a new Middle East, one in which the people will no longer allow themselves to be dominated and controlled by either oppressive dictators or the militant policies and actions of Israel.


The loss of Israel's dictator/ally, Mubarak, will prove to be a tremendous blow to Israel and its agenda of dominance. Mubarak was a force for Israel as he not only kept the Egyptian people in a state of suppression, but he also was a great help to Israel in maintaining its cruel, inhuman blockade of the people of Gaza. Now he's gone and there already are indications in Egypt that those currently in control do not intend to be coerced or otherwise pressured to do the bidding of Israel.  


To show how very quickly things can change, and for the better, just look at this headline: "Egypt Reopens Gaza Border Crossing." The article by Jason Ditz in reports the stunning news that the Egyptian military junta has opened the border crossing to the Gaza Strip. How fantastic and unexpected that such a great humanitarian gesture could happen in such a short time; what a great turn of events for the besieged people of Gaza who have endured years of unconscionable treatment by the government of Israel, supported by Mubarak.


There have been other surprising moves. In another totally unexpected action, Egypt, on February 21, allowed two Iranian warships to pass through the Suez Canal into the Mediterranean Sea on their way toward Syria, the first time that this has been allowed since 1979. Also, natural gas shipments to Israel have been suspended due to an explosion and some of the leaders of the Egyptian revolutionary movement have stated that they do not favor continuing shipments to Israel.


In another ominous sign, these same leaders have indicated that they are not committed to maintaining either the long-standing peace treaty with Israel or the alliance with Israel against Iran; further, that they are willing to consider the possibility of doing business with Iran. So the relationship between Egypt and Israel going into the future appears to be quite problematic at best.


But wait, there's yet more another problem for Israel. Turkey, a former ally, has suspended diplomatic relations with Israel because of Israel's commando attacks on six ships that were carrying humanitarian supplies to Gaza in May of 2010. In what Turkey has referred to as a barbaric act, nine activists were killed, eight of them Turkish nationals and one a Turkish-American. While Turkey has demanded an acknowledgment of what happened and an apology, Israel has refused to take responsibility for its actions and refuses to apologize. And so any relationship between Turkey and Israel may be severed.


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