Analysis – Could Syria Bring Rivals Iran, Russia, and Turkey Together?

The Syrian civil war has turned into a power vacuum pulling in fighters from all directions and many nations, with many of them fighting each other in which there are at least three or four sides in the conflict. Yet perhaps the most divisive mini-world war in recent memory may …

Israel—An Ancient King of Making Glass

Centuries before the Land of Israel was a hub for the high-tech industry, the region was among the world leaders in another profession involving science, skill, and specialized knowledge: glass making. The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) announced in a press release on Monday that they have discovered 1,600-year-old kilns used …

French Peace Conference Set; Israel Proposes 1-on-1 Instead

With time running out on plans to hold an international Middle East peace conference in Paris, the French are reportedly planning on the week before Christmas for the event, which may not host either the Israelis or the Palestinians. French media Le Figaro reported that the Israelis are opposed to what …

Trump May Release Secret Iran Docs; Iran Boasts Growing Missile Program

The Iran nuclear deal was criticized by incoming U.S. President Donald Trump as being “disastrous,” and in January he may be able to release non-publicized documents that could raise even more questions about the agreement. The Daily Beast reported this week that senior officials who will be in the incoming …

Recent Articles:

Trump May Release Secret Iran Docs; Iran Boasts Growing Missile Program

December 8, 2016 Iran Nuclear Program, News
Will Trump expose the Iran deal to be even worse than already known? Radiation Warning Symbol. Public Domain.

Will Trump expose the Iran deal to be even worse than already known? Radiation Warning Symbol. Public Domain.

The Iran nuclear deal was criticized by incoming U.S. President Donald Trump as being “disastrous,” and in January he may be able to release non-publicized documents that could raise even more questions about the agreement. The Daily Beast reported this week that senior officials who will be in the incoming Trump administration are looking at Iran documents the Obama administration put in sensitive information facilities that effectively hid them from anyone without security clearance, despite the documents being unclassified.

Among those documents include secret exemptions for Iran’s nuclear materials, which while secret were reportedly discussed in a report by the Institute for Science and International Security in September. Details about the prisoner swap between the U.S. and Iran and projections of the development of Iran’s nuclear program are also believed to be in the document list. Even some members of Obama’s own party have called for secret Iran documents to be publicized if there isn’t a legitimate reason to keep them hidden, reported The Weekly Standard. … Continue Reading

French Peace Conference Set; Israel Proposes 1-on-1 Instead

December 7, 2016 Peace and Conflict
French still planning peace summit. French, Israeli flags. Illustrative.

French still planning peace summit. French, Israeli flags. Illustrative.

With time running out on plans to hold an international Middle East peace conference in Paris, the French are reportedly planning on the week before Christmas for the event, which may not host either the Israelis or the Palestinians. French media Le Figaro reported that the Israelis are opposed to what they see as a process detrimental to the peace efforts, and so the French may not ultimately invite the Palestinians either lest the event look particularly one-sided with just them present.

The Jerusalem Post, citing Le Figaro and other French media, also reported that France was seeking a meeting alongside the conference between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. But while not interested in the conference, Netanyahu isn’t opposed to meeting Abbas. On the contrary, the Israeli leader spoke with French President Francois Hollande on Wednesday to tell him “that if there is no international conference in Paris, he would come to meet with [Abbas] for direct talks without preconditions,” said a statement from Netanyahu’s office. … Continue Reading

Canal Meant to Revive Dead Sea Moving Forward

December 4, 2016 News
Could the shrinking Dead Sea make a come back in 2020? Dead Sea. Illustrative. Photo courtesy of the Israel Ministry of Tourism

Could the shrinking Dead Sea make a come back in 2020? Dead Sea. Illustrative. Photo courtesy of the Israel Ministry of Tourism

With the Dead Sea slowly shrinking away, an ambitious plan to restore the Sea famous for it’s extremely salty waters is progressing. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said regarding the plan—which will take water from the Red Sea at the south of Israel, desalinate it for drinking and then take the saltier water remnants to replenish the Dead Sea—that they have “crossed another stage en route to realizing the canal between the seas project.”

The Jordan Times reported that roughly $400 million has been raised from nations and agencies from around the world, with some of it coming in the form of easy-to-repay loans or grants. The United States is contributing a quarter of that sum—$100 million. Netanyahu, in comments released by his office, said that according to the plan, “in 2020 fresh water will be supplied to the residents of the Aravah [region] and salt water will finally be channeled to the Dead Sea.” … Continue Reading

Israel and Palestinians Hope Trump Can Bring Middle East Peace

November 30, 2016 Peace and Conflict
Will Trump be Israel's friend? U.S. Presidential Candidate Donald Trump (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). Illustrative. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon (GPO)

Will Trump be Israel’s friend? U.S. Presidential Candidate Donald Trump (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). Illustrative. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon (GPO)

Following the dramatic election of Donald Trump to be the next U.S. President, Israelis and Palestinians have found another thing to agree upon—that Trump would bring about a solution to their decades old conflict. Just weeks after the Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations, Riyad Mansour threatened to make Trump’s “life miserable” if the new American leader fulfilled his promise to move the U.S. embassy to Israel to Jerusalem, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas expressed hope that Trump would solve the Palestinian conflict. Abbas’ comments were made during a lengthy speech at the seventh Fatah Conference, according to The Times of Israel.

Meanwhile, Israel’s top diplomat expressed similar hope in comments to “This Week in Asia.” Tzipi Hotovely, commenting on a report by The New York Times that Trump’s son-in-law could be a emissary to address the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, said they would welcome Jared Kushner to the region. … Continue Reading

Guatemala Wants to Follow Israeli Water Example

November 29, 2016 News
Israeli PM Netanyahu and Guatemala President Morales. Photo courtesy of Haim Zach (GPO)

Israeli PM Netanyahu and Guatemala President Morales. Photo courtesy of Haim Zach (GPO)

Israel is a world leader in water management and technology, but Guatemala wants to do more than just tap into Israel’s intellect or buy their equipment – they want to follow Israel’s example. “A few years ago there was a water deficit in this country and thanks to the right management of water you have exceeding water at the moment,” Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in comments published by Netanyahu’s office.

“So this only shows that when the people of Israel want to make great change it succeeds with efficiency. And this is an example we would like to follow.” … Continue Reading

IDF, ISIS-Affiliates Engage in Major Fight for First Time

November 27, 2016 Peace and Conflict
Signpost showing distance between Israel, Syria in Golan Heights. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

Signpost showing distance between Israel, Syria in Golan Heights. Illustrative. By Joshua Spurlock

Terrorists believed to be affiliated with ISIS (ISIL) attacked IDF soldiers on a special mission along the Israel-Syrian border, and the Israelis struck back—killing four terrorists in an airstrike. IDF spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner on Twitter said the terrorists fired mortars at the Israeli forces “in a breach of Israeli sovereignty.” Lerner responded to a question asking who was taken out by the IDF strike, tweeting, “4 ISIS affiliated gunmen & their vehicle that has a mounted weapon. Threat eliminated!”

The Times of Israel reported that the Israeli reconnaissance unit soldiers were near the edge of Israeli territory on an “ambush operation” when they were attacked by the terrorists, with the Israel Air Force retaliating. Lerner confirmed via Twitter the ambush was to deal with “potential threats.”

No Israeli soldiers were wounded, per The Times of Israel, which noted that while the IDF has fought with various opponents along the Syrian border, this was the first significant engagement with ISIS-affiliated terrorists. … Continue Reading

Stay informed! Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email.

Follow The Mideast Update on Twitter

Like The Mideast Update on Facebook

Categories