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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Israel Surrounded As Arab Spring Turns Darker

Sept. 13 (Bloomberg) — The Middle East is plunging toward crisis. The early promise of Tahrir Square has been supplanted by dismay that the Egyptian authorities — such as they are — allowed mobs to lay siege to the Israeli embassy in Cairo this past weekend.

Not long ago, Turkey and Israel were strategic partners. Now, relations between those two key U.S. allies are in ruins. When a recent United Nations report on the deadly confrontation between the Israeli military and a flotilla of Gaza-bound activists that sparked this crisis largely exonerated Israel, Turkey reacted by threatening to send warships to the eastern Mediterranean.

And the Jewish state faces a miserable month at the UN, where the Palestinians, who have refused to meet Israel at the negotiating table, are planning to seek recognition as an independent state, with potentially catastrophic consequences for both sides.

“As the months of Arab Spring have turned autumnal, Israel has increasingly become a target of public outrage,” the New York Times’ Ethan Bronner wrote this weekend from Jerusalem. “Some here say Israel is again being made a scapegoat, this time for unfulfilled revolutionary promises. But there is another interpretation, and it is the predominant one abroad — Muslims, Arabs and indeed many around the globe believe Israel is unjustly occupying Palestinian territories, and they are furious at Israel for it.”

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