Middle East

Israel will obtain justice for its victims - will the peace process in the Middle East recover?

Date: October 8, 2023.
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Hamas's unprecedented terrorist action against Israel is a sinister and, unfortunately, effective way to destroy a number of peace trends that have emerged in the Middle East.

The terrorist attack by Hamas, under control and with encouragement from Tehran, destroyed the lives of hundreds of Israelis and the previous peace initiatives in the region, which, after decades of conflict, finally raised real hope for lasting peace.

The state of Israel will obtain justice for its victims, but the region and the world will struggle to get things back to the level it was at before last Saturday morning, when the Hamas attacks on Israel began.

Tehran's direct and robust support for Hamas's terrorist operation "until the liberation of Palestine and Jerusalem", as Yahya Rahim Safavi, the leading military advisor of Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said, leaves no room for doubt that Iran was the initiator of the attack on Israel. An unmistakable proof is Hezbollah's participation in the operation in northern Israel on Sunday, during which it fired numerous missiles.

The regime in Tehran is also most interested in the collapse of peace processes in the region and, above all, the Israeli-Saudi agreement.

Just 10 days ago, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said at the UN headquarters that Israel is "at the cusp" of a historic agreement with Saudi Arabia, and spoke in an optimistic tone about the normalisation of relations with the Arab neighbours, which have already progressed after the Abraham Accords.

This activated an alarm bell for the fanatics in Tehran and Gaza to take extreme measures to prevent the rapprochement of the 2 principal regional players and, thus, the complete pacification of the region.

In such a Middle East, sooner or later, there would be no place for Palestinian or any other terrorists and their patron in Tehran.

Saudi reluctance

The initial reaction of Saudi Arabia to Hamas action has not been encouraging because the Foreign Ministry refrained from condemning the massive attack, the killing and kidnapping of civilians, and the destruction of Israeli settlements.

Riyadh has time to correct its position and, instead of the current washed-up justification of Hamas's attack ("We recall our repeated warnings of the dangers of the situation exploding as a result of the continued occupation"), realise that by defending Hamas's terrorism today, it will not be able to be a credible representative of the interests of all Palestinians tomorrow.

The same goes for Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas or any of his successors if they even regard themselves as part of a future peace process. Unless they have already left it to the rival Hamas to decide the fate of all Palestinians through terrorism in Israel.

Despite repeated pleas for a ceasefire from both sides, the allies in Moscow share Tehran's sympathies for the terrorism committed by Hamas but also compliance with the Palestinian demands for "establishing an independent Palestinian state within its 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital".

Russia stands with Iran and Hezbollah

The honest reaction of Moscow comes from former President Dmitry Medvedev, who said that Hamas's attack on Israel "was expected", accusing the US of being responsible for it as a "key player" in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Russia received a gift from heaven in the form of the Hamas attack on Israel in exchange for its invasion of Ukraine. Russia has every reason to support Iran and Hamas publicly in order to relax its position in Ukraine, which is crucial for its very existence.

Moscow is not very interested that this decision has confirmed joining the bloc of renegade states (Iran and North Korea) and siding with terrorists. After all, a high level delegation of Hamas visited Moscow last March at Russia's invitation, where they also had a meeting with Sergey Lavrov, the head of diplomacy.

Russia will expect benefits from Hamas's terrorism against Israel for its priorities in Ukraine. At the same time, this will strengthen relations with Iran as one of its principal weapon suppliers.

Moscow is likely counting on the fact that Israel, which has been preoccupied with the fight against terrorists, will now be unable to assist Ukraine more decisively as a response to Russia's benevolence towards Hamas. However, it also reveals more about the essence of the Moscow regime and how it is connected to the goals of some of the most notorious regimes in history.

Responsibility of the Netanyahu government

Israel established internal unity following the greatest tragedy in the last half century, placing the defence of the country and the rescue of hostages from the hands of terrorists as a national priority.

But it has already paid a heavy price for the arrogance of the ultra-conservative government of Benjamin Netanyahu. It kept the country in a state of total political instability for almost a year, focused on the repressive removal of power from the judiciary. This was opposed by hundreds of thousands of Israelis in the streets, including parts of the military and security apparatus.

There is no doubt that this internal weakening of Israel, for which the Netanyahu government is undoubtedly responsible, was a sign of encouragement to the terrorists from Gaza to launch an unprecedented terrorist attack.

In such an environment, one should look for the reasons for the astonishing failure of the Israeli intelligence services to discover the intentions of Hamas in time. Israel has been shamed like never before in the last half-century. In October 1973, when the Yom Kippur War began, Israeli security had been caught sleeping for the last time.

Even though belated, PM Netanyahu's call for opposition leader Yair Lapid and former defence minister Benny Gantz to join him in the emergency government shows that an end has been put to internal friction. But the excessive price of government arbitrariness has already been paid.

Great responsibility before the US

International solidarity with Israel, in its most difficult moments in the last half century, is impressive. Significant and open support also came from the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, and from the leaders of the US and Europe.

The US will be responsible for ensuring that Arab leaders in the region clearly reject Hamas terrorism and their full cooperation in ending terrorism and normalising conditions as the most influential actor in the Middle East processes.

This is in reference to Saudi Arabia, with whose leadership US State Secretary Antony Blinken has already communicated. Only if it established a definite break with Hamas terrorism and continued to work with Israel to forge a deal could it maintain its position as the most influential Arab state in the area.

"This is not a moment for any party hostile to Israel to exploit these attacks to seek advantage. The world is watching", said US President Joe Biden regarding the attack on Israel.

Even though it referred to the destructive factors in the Middle East, why should it not also be applied to the miserable attempts of some conservative Republicans in the US? They accused their government of funding the Hamas terrorist attack on Israel by unfreezing $6 billion for Iran. Among them is Donald Trump, who said "he wasn't shocked because 2 weeks ago they gave them $6 billion".

"The deal to bring U.S. citizens home from Iran has nothing to do with the horrific attack on Israel. Not a penny has been spent, and when it is, it can only be for humanitarian needs like food and medicine. Anything to the contrary is false", said Matthew Miller, State Department spokesperson.

Source TA, Photo: Shutterstock