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Israel

Our Research & Offerings on Israel
  • Commentary posted August 6, 2014 by Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D. An Assault on Sovereignty in Israel, Ukraine

    At a conference in Israel earlier this month, the White House's Middle East coordinator, Philip Gordon, spoke the magic word: sovereignty. Unfortunately, for the White House, it's just a word. From Israel to Ukraine, today's crises show what happens when the world forgets what sovereignty requires. Speaking in Tel Aviv, Gordon urged Israel to "end the occupations and…

  • Commentary posted July 17, 2014 by James Phillips Gaza Crisis Illuminates a Grave New World

    The eruption of the third Gaza war since 2008 is yet another manifestation of the growing threat posed by Islamist militants within an increasingly unstable Middle East.  In recent years, Al-Qaeda and other Islamist revolutionary groups have made major gains in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia, Bahrain and Yemen.  They have exploited the chaos of the…

  • Commentary posted January 9, 2014 by Brett D. Schaefer No ‘Partial Funding’ for UNESCO

    Despite objections and warnings from the Obama administration, the U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) granted full membership to the Palestinian Authority in 2011. That decision ran afoul of two U.S. laws, passed in the early 1990s, that prohibit U.S. funding for any U.N. organization that grants membership to the Palestine Liberation…

  • Commentary posted October 23, 2013 by James Phillips Why US aid cuts will backfire in Egypt

    Earlier this month the Obama administration announced it was cutting military aid to Egypt by hundreds of millions of dollars.  The move had nothing to do with the budget battle in D.C. Rather, it was a belated reaction to last July’s military coup against President Mohamed Morsi’s increasingly autocratic Islamist government.  Unfortunately, the administration has taken…

  • Commentary posted October 17, 2013 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Negotiations with Iran could start a war

    War is a great leap into the dark. It is a chancy affair to predict when a particular act will end with the troops going over the top. Still, one can't help but worry that President Obama's plan to negotiate with Tehran one more time might bring Israel one step closer to a direct military confrontation with Iran. Here is why. It doesn't take a crystal ball to…

  • Issue Brief posted August 23, 2013 by James Phillips Egypt’s Coup Requires a Cautious U.S. Response

    Egypt’s July 3 coup and the crackdown on President Mohamed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood have sparked renewed calls from Congress for a cutoff of U.S. foreign aid to the new Egyptian government. While there are strong arguments in favor of continuing aid, the Obama Administration cannot continue to deny that what happened in Egypt was indeed a coup, which legally requires a…

  • Commentary posted April 3, 2013 by James Phillips Obama’s Middle East Challenges

    Brokering an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement - for recent American presidents, it’s been the holy grail of foreign policy. Unfortunately for President Obama, a comprehensive accord is just not in the cards for his second term. It won’t be for lack of trying. But the inconvenient truth is that peace is impossible as long as Hamas retains its stranglehold over Gaza.…

  • Commentary posted March 19, 2013 by James Phillips The Bottom Line on Obama's Middle East Mission

    Middle East tensions are rising as President Obama prepares to visit Israel, the West Bank and Jordan. Clearly, Iran will be at the top of the agenda. On Thursday, Mr. Obama announced that Tehran was only about a year away from producing a nuclear bomb. “Obviously, we don’t want to cut it too close,” he noted. Another issue requiring urgent attention: forging a common…

  • Issue Brief posted March 15, 2013 by James Phillips Obama’s Middle East Trip: Security Goals Should Be the Highest Priority

    President Obama’s upcoming trip to Israel, the West Bank, and Jordan comes at a tense time in an increasingly turbulent region. High on his agenda will be halting Iran’s nuclear weapons efforts, forging a common policy on containing the destabilizing spillover effects of Syria’s meltdown, and reviving the long-stalled Israeli–Palestinian peace negotiations. The President…

  • Commentary posted November 29, 2012 by Brett D. Schaefer, James Phillips The Implications of the U.N. Decision

    As expected, the United Nations General Assembly voted (138–9, with 41 abstentions) to upgrade the status of the Palestinian Authority from an observer entity to a non-member state observer this afternoon. Because individual governments are not required to comply with General Assembly resolutions, this vote is largely symbolic in terms of how governments regard…

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  • Backgrounder posted July 6, 2011 by Brett D. Schaefer, James Phillips How the U.S. Should Respond to the U.N. Vote for Palestinian Statehood

    Abstract: In September 2011, the U.N. General Assembly is expected to vote on a resolution recognizing Palestinian statehood. This resolution is linked to Palestinian efforts to obtain U.N. membership as a state and to delegitimize Israel. These efforts will have no legal significance because the General Assembly has no standing to recognize statehood—that is the right of…

  • Commentary posted August 6, 2014 by Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D. An Assault on Sovereignty in Israel, Ukraine

    At a conference in Israel earlier this month, the White House's Middle East coordinator, Philip Gordon, spoke the magic word: sovereignty. Unfortunately, for the White House, it's just a word. From Israel to Ukraine, today's crises show what happens when the world forgets what sovereignty requires. Speaking in Tel Aviv, Gordon urged Israel to "end the occupations and…

  • WebMemo posted September 26, 2011 by Baker Spring, Michaela Dodge Israel and the Iron Dome System: A Lesson for the United States

    Since Israel deployed its new Iron Dome artillery and rocket interceptor system in April, it successfully used it to shoot down Hamas Grad rockets. The Israeli experience with Iron Dome shows that the criterion of cost effectiveness for missile defenses has been defined too narrowly in the United States. More to the Story The missile defense cost-effectiveness debate…

  • Commentary posted October 6, 2011 by James Phillips Should the U.S. Pressure Palestinians, Israel on a Treaty?

    In going to the United Nations to push for Palestinian statehood, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas essentially turned his back on the 1993 Oslo peace accord with Israel and U.S.-brokered Mideast peace negotiations. His campaign was a loud and very public vote of no-confidence in the Obama administration’s Middle East policy. Abbas’ insistence on bypassing…

  • Backgrounder posted July 7, 1986 by James Phillips America's Security Stake in Israel

    (Archived document, may contain errors) I 521 July 7, 1986 AMERICA'S SECURITY. STAKE IN ISRAEL INTRODUCTION The United States and Israel, longstanding friends bound together by congruent national interests and shared value systems, have been engaging in increasingly close strategic cooperation y ears, Israel's importance in American strategic thinking has been…

  • Lecture posted July 16, 2009 by Janice A. Smith The Middle East, Fragmented Societies, and the Future

    Your excellencies, friends, fellow workers in the field of justice and peace, it is indeed an honor to be able to share a few thoughts and pose a few questions on this topic that I believe you are best able to address. I first met Pilar Lara over five years ago in Washington when I worked in the State Department's Bureau of International Organization Affairs,…

  • Commentary posted July 17, 2014 by James Phillips Gaza Crisis Illuminates a Grave New World

    The eruption of the third Gaza war since 2008 is yet another manifestation of the growing threat posed by Islamist militants within an increasingly unstable Middle East.  In recent years, Al-Qaeda and other Islamist revolutionary groups have made major gains in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia, Bahrain and Yemen.  They have exploited the chaos of the…

  • WebMemo posted January 2, 2009 by James Phillips Gaza Cease-Fire Must Halt Hamas Rockets

    The crisis in Gaza, provoked by the Palestinian extremist organization Hamas to advance its radical agenda, is likely to worsen in the coming days. After initially showing great restraint after Hamas ended the six-month cease-fire (which it never fully complied with anyway) on December 19 and escalated its rocket bombardment of Israeli civilians, Israel has sought to…

  • WebMemo posted June 16, 2010 by Sally McNamara, James Phillips Hamas Is a Threat to Peace, Despite Propaganda Claims

    Criticism of Israel’s May 31 interception of an “aid” flotilla has prompted a misguided call from the European Union for “an urgent and fundamental change of policy” to allow for the unconditional opening of Gaza border crossings.[1] This criticism directly contradicts the EU’s designation of Hamas as a proscribed terrorist organization and represents a de facto…

  • Testimony posted September 21, 2012 by James Phillips Safeguarding Israel’s Security in a Volatile Region

    Testimony before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia September 20, 2012 My name is James Phillips. I am the Senior Research Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at The Heritage Foundation. The views I express in this testimony are my own, and should not be construed as representing any official…

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  • Issue Brief posted August 23, 2013 by James Phillips Egypt’s Coup Requires a Cautious U.S. Response

    Egypt’s July 3 coup and the crackdown on President Mohamed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood have sparked renewed calls from Congress for a cutoff of U.S. foreign aid to the new Egyptian government. While there are strong arguments in favor of continuing aid, the Obama Administration cannot continue to deny that what happened in Egypt was indeed a coup, which legally requires a…

  • Issue Brief posted March 15, 2013 by James Phillips Obama’s Middle East Trip: Security Goals Should Be the Highest Priority

    President Obama’s upcoming trip to Israel, the West Bank, and Jordan comes at a tense time in an increasingly turbulent region. High on his agenda will be halting Iran’s nuclear weapons efforts, forging a common policy on containing the destabilizing spillover effects of Syria’s meltdown, and reviving the long-stalled Israeli–Palestinian peace negotiations. The President…

  • Issue Brief posted November 21, 2012 by James Phillips Gaza Crisis: U.S. Should Press Egypt to Rein in Hamas

    Although the current Gaza crisis is in many ways reminiscent of the last flare-up in December 2008–January 2009, there are important differences this time around. Hamas’s terrorist reach now includes Israel’s heartland cities of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv due to long-range Iranian rockets. However, Israel’s new Iron Dome missile defense system has mitigated this threat. The…

  • Issue Brief posted September 28, 2012 by Brett D. Schaefer, James Phillips The U.S. Must Oppose the Palestinian Statehood Effort at the U.N.

    The Palestinians have announced their intent to use the United Nations once again to bolster their claims of statehood. Last year, the Obama Administration blocked their bid for full U.N. membership by threatening to use its Security Council veto. Now the Palestinians are seeking “non-member state” permanent observer status, which does not require Security Council…

  • Issue Brief posted August 22, 2012 by James Phillips U.S. Should Insist Egypt’s Military Buildup Must Comply with Peace Treaty

    Egypt is preparing a military offensive against Islamist militants in the Sinai who have launched a series of terrorist attacks against Egyptian border guards in an effort to weaken the central government and provoke a war with Israel. This campaign is expected to include armored forces and air strikes in the first major Egyptian military action in the demilitarized Sinai…

  • Issue Brief posted August 6, 2012 by Baker Spring U.S.–Israeli Missile Defense Cooperation: Building on the Success of Iron Dome

    On July 27, President Obama signed into law the United States–Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act, which is designed to strengthen the qualitative edge of Israeli military forces over its current and future enemies. While the law serves to strengthen this edge in a variety of areas, it pays special attention to improving Israel’s capabilities for defending its…

  • Issue Brief posted April 4, 2012 by Brett D. Schaefer ICC Prosecutor Makes Right Call on Palestinian Declaration, but Grave Concerns Remain

    In an effort to bring international pressure on Israel, the Palestinian Authority declared in 2009 that it would submit to the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) for alleged crimes committed in its territory. Three years later, the ICC prosecutor concluded that he does not have the authority under the Rome Statute to initiate an investigation because…

  • Backgrounder posted March 15, 2012 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. How the U.S. Should Respond to Russia's Unhelpful Role in the Middle East

    Abstract: Russia is pursuing a Middle Eastern policy that is designed to reduce U.S. and Western influence in the Middle East, even at the risk of Islamist terrorism, which is a growing problem in Russia. It views the recent upheavals in the Middle East and North Africa as an American conspiracy to undermine Russia and friendly regimes in the region. Russia’s Soviet…

  • Issue Brief posted March 2, 2012 by James Phillips The Obama–Netanyahu Summit: Time to Present a Common Front Against Iran

    When President Obama meets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House on March 5, the Iranian nuclear issue will dominate their agenda. The two leaders have starkly different perceptions of Iran’s evolving nuclear threat and how best to confront it. Both governments have publicly aired their differences in the run-up to the meeting, with the Obama…

  • WebMemo posted February 6, 2012 by James Phillips, James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. If Israel Attacks

    Israel has signaled once again that it is weighing an attack, if all else fails, to halt Iran’s advancing nuclear weapons program as an act of anticipatory self-defense. This time, more officials in Washington and other capitals are listening. Iranian officials have repeatedly warned that Tehran will retaliate against the U.S. in the event that Israel launches a strike.…

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Find more work on Israel