Posted by Zubair Khan
I began by pointing out how secure Israel is currently. Looking down the road 10 years, Israel cannot assume that this strategic configuration will remain in place. Egypt’s future is uncertain. The emergence of a hostile Egyptian government is not inconceivable. Syria, like Lebanon, appears to be fragmented. What will come of this is unclear. And whether in 10 years the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan will remain Hashemite or become a Palestinian state is worthy of contemplation. None have military power now, but then Egypt went from disaster in 1967 to a very capable force in 1973. They had a Soviet patron. They might have another patron in 10 years.
Right now, Israel does not need the United States, nor American aid, which means much less to them now than it did in 1973. They need it as a symbol of American commitment and will continue to need it. But the real Israeli fear is that the United States is moving away from direct intervention to a more subtle form of manipulation. That represents a threat to Israel if Israel ever needs direct intervention rather than manipulation. But more immediately, it threatens Israel because the more relationships the United States has in the region, the less significant Israel is to Washington’s strategy. If the United States maintains this relationship with Saudi Arabia, Turkey and others, Israel becomes not the anchor of U.S. policy but one of many considerations. This is Israel’s real fear in these negotiations.