Is there a red line for Israel to be at war with all Arab countries? Why hasn't the Middle East embargoed oil and gas supplies to Israel? Is it possible to defeat Hamas at all? Pravda.Ru asked these an other questions to Tofik Abbasov, a political scientist and specialist in the Middle East and the post-Soviet space.
"Arab countries are opposed to Israel's ground operation in the Gaza Strip. However, they limited themselves to words and take no action. Is there a red line for them to cross to get involved in the war with Israel?"
"There are more than twenty Arab countries, but they are always divided into certain groups. Each of those groups has its own priorities. In 1973, Saudi King Faisal declared an embargo, other Arab countries supported him, but the Shah of Iran came to the rescue. He provided quotas to the US and Israel. We know how the Iranian Shah ended up. We also know how Egyptian President Anwar Sadat ended up after he decided to conclude the Camp David Accords.
"Anwar Sadat turned his back on the Soviet Union, even though the USSR had provided a lot of support to him at a time when Egypt, due to the ineptitude of its military leadership, lost the Yom Kippur War in 1973. Nevertheless, Cairo made a different political choice.
"The Camp David Accords did not stabilise the situation in the East. This is a very turbulent region indeed. When the war ended, the Americans ensured that Anwar Sadat met directly with Menachem Begin, the Israeli prime minister. Sadat won by not being the first to say what he wanted. Menachem Begin spoke first. He said: "We must fight for the Palestinian people, this is crucial for us." He did not even think about it before the talks. As soon as he heard that he was the winner, that he was getting the Sinai Peninsula, he decided that he could play the Palestine card. We all know how he played it.
"Today, we can see the Israeli military leadership committing genocide and war crimes. The UN is highly concerned, but Israel has adopted the attitude of a victim. Israel claims that everyone is wrong — the UN Secretary General is wrong, all the countries and forces that condemn Israel are wrong."
"The most unpleasant thing is that Israel is using the Holocaust to its own advantage. It appears that it is the Holocaust that supposedly gives Tel Aviv the right to use such unjustified cruelty."
"This is an immoral approach, one can not align such things. Justifying your crimes by saying that you used to be a victim in the past is utterly wrong. The Israeli society is divided already. The left bloc is against the use of such hard power. They advocate the creation of the State of Palestine. There is a clear road map verified by the United Nations. Most countries believe that one should return to the 1967 borders and create the Palestinian state. This is the solution to the problem.
"Israel says: "We will be killing them like wild animals." Israel surrounded the Palestinians, blocked them into an enclave. Was there any hope for peace at all? Israel was keeping those people in a cage telling them to behave and promising to feed them in return. What kind of life is it? About 2.5 million people live under the conditions of severe blockade. Of course, there is a resistance movement there because one would resist to such living conditions.
"Everyone wants to know what is going to happen after the military operation, how Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas will behave…"
"Hamas can not be destroyed. It is extremely regrettable that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu does not want to come to terms with this. Israel has taken the crisis to the point when Hamas is going to last forever. New forces will continue to emerge. There are a lot of young people there. This style of struggle, Islamic, Muslim, Arab resistance (whatever you want to call it), can never be suppressed."
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