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We’re Winning in the Middle East

 

In Iran / Syria last week:

  • President Trump withdrew from the Iran deal.
  • Iran responded by firing missiles into Israel.
  • Israel responded by destroying much of Iran’s military assets in Syria.
  • Russia responded by announcing that on second thought they would not be sending arms to Iranian forces in Syria. That is, they were reducing their support for Iran in Syria.
  • Saudi Arabia’s proxy Bahrain explicitly affirmed the rights of all states, including Israel, to defend themselves. A remarkable comment from a country that doesn’t recognize the state of Israel.

A few days earlier Bahrain and UAE were Tweeting their happiness to be in Jerusalem to participate in an international bike race. This is new.

With Hamas on Monday:

  • Hamas sent tens of thousands to riot and attempt to breach the Israeli border, with the express stated goal of trying to kill Israeli civilians on the other side.
  • Israel fought back.
  • The United States government stood firmly with Israel.
  • Much of Western media revealed their depravity, but no one who mattered was particularly moved.
  • Egypt ordered Hamas to stop.

Hamas’ efforts can only succeed if they convince the Israeli left or the US to stop Israel from winning. That’s not happening.

We’re learning a few things about President Trump:

  • He deals with the bosses, not their proxies. In this case, Russia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia.
  • His goal is we win, you lose. When you’re ready to sue for surrender, we can talk. We’ll even let you save face.
  • He stands with his allies.
  • He enjoys standing up to the “international community” and “the experts.”
  • He apologizes to no one.

Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

Meanwhile the Saudi Arabian crown prince has been semi-publicly calling on the Palestinians to take whatever deal they’re offered.

The New York Times (a former newspaper) is calling on Palestinian Authority President Abbas to step down following nasty comments about Jews and the Holocaust.

The Times’ willingness to suddenly stop lying about Abbas should encourage us on other issues too. It’s like when they suddenly realized that Russia was flawed. One day maybe they’ll realize the same about Marxism. But I digress. The Times calling for Abbas to be replaced is further indication that a deal is being forged with some other “Palestinian leaders.”

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel, and the United States seem to have mostly worked out the contours of a peace deal which they and some Palestinian leaders will sign. It won’t be a final status Messianic Utopian all-is-solved deal. But it will likely include an official end to hostilities between Israel and some of her Arab neighbors, even if not immediate full normalization. It will bring greater freedom and prosperity, though not much democracy, to Palestinians and other Arabs across the region. It’s apparently not many months away.

Of course it could still all go to hell. But right now it’s looking awfully promising.

Published in Foreign Policy
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There are 57 comments.

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  1. Member

    This is objectively the truth. If these accomplishments had occurred under either President Bush, there would be universal acclaim here for such foreign policy success.

    The Left would hate such GOP POTUS success no matter. They would say that our success will only lead to war.

    • #1
    • May 16, 2018 at 4:23 am
    • 11 likes
  2. Member

    Tired yet? I’m not.

    • #2
    • May 16, 2018 at 4:47 am
    • 19 likes
  3. Member

    Great post. It should go without saying (but unfortunately does not) that “We” in your title does not mean, “Trump and the deplorables,” or even just the US. As freedom advances and terrorism is beaten back, everybody wins. The Gazan on the street can be forgiven for not understanding this fact. I am less generous with left wingers here and in Israel.

    • #3
    • May 16, 2018 at 4:58 am
    • 19 likes
  4. Member
    Gil Reich Post author

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Tired yet? I’m not.

    Yes, pretty sure Trump was lying about that. But it’s still new to me, so who knows? Maybe in 6 years I’ll be tired of all the winning. 

    • #4
    • May 16, 2018 at 5:02 am
    • 6 likes
  5. Member

    Loved your post Gil

    Gil Reich: Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    Oh contraire. Obstacle,s and enemies of the republic should continue to be pounded. While the pearl clutchers kick up a dust storm, winning quietly continues under the dusty radar.

    Agree on leaving McCain alone now, but not before.

    • #5
    • May 16, 2018 at 5:27 am
    • 10 likes
  6. Thatcher

    Gil Reich (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Tired yet? I’m not.

    Yes, pretty sure Trump was lying about that. But it’s still new to me, so who knows? Maybe in 6 years I’ll be tired of all the winning.

    I am certainly tired of all the “whining”. Go DJT!

    (He’s good at giving nicknames. Maybe we should give him one: “Money talks and bulls*** walks” Donald.)

    • #6
    • May 16, 2018 at 5:37 am
    • 6 likes
  7. Coolidge

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Loved your post Gil

    Gil Reich: Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    Oh contraire. Obstacle,s and enemies of the republic should continue to be pounded. While the pearl clutchers kick up a dust storm, winning quietly continues under the dusty radar.

    Agree on leaving McCain alone now, but not before.

    This is Stalinist. John McCain and Mika Brzenski are not “Enemies of the Republic.” This kind of rhetoric is the sort of thing freedom loving classical liberals like we claim to be are supposed to be fighting against.

    • #7
    • May 16, 2018 at 5:48 am
    • 2 likes
  8. Coolidge

    Gil Reich:

    Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel and the United States seem to have mostly worked out the contours of a peace deal which they and some Palestinian leaders will sign. It won’t be a final status Messianic Utopian all-is-solved deal. But it will likely include an official end to hostilities between Israel and some of her Arab neighbors, even if not immediate full normalization. It will bring greater freedom and prosperity, though not much democracy, to Palestinians and other Arabs across the region. It’s apparently not many months away.

     

    I’ll believe it when I see it. The Palestinians cannot be trusted. Deals have been signed before, and broken before the corresponding POTUS’s term was up. The only thing that gives me even a sliver of hope is that the Saudis seem to be pushing for something permanent, and even then I don’t think the Palestinians are smart enough to realize they’ve lost.

    They can sign all the pieces of paper they want, but it’ll be decades before I believe that the Palestinians have been pacified.

    • #8
    • May 16, 2018 at 5:54 am
    • 4 likes
  9. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Loved your post Gil

    Gil Reich: Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    Oh contraire. Obstacle,s and enemies of the republic should continue to be pounded. While the pearl clutchers kick up a dust storm, winning quietly continues under the dusty radar.

    Agree on leaving McCain alone now, but not before.

    This is Stalinist. John McCain and Mika Brzenski are not “Enemies of the Republic.” This kind of rhetoric is the sort of thing freedom loving classical liberals like we claim to be are supposed to be fighting against.

    This is Stalinist …….. Just wow.

    • #9
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:04 am
    • 7 likes
  10. Member

    Gil Reich:

    We’re learning a few things about President Trump:

    • He deals with the bosses, not their proxies. In this case, Russia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia.
    • His goal is we win, you lose. When you’re ready to sue for surrender, we can talk. We’ll even let you save face.
    • He stands with his allies.
    • He enjoys standing up to the “international community” and “the experts.”
    • He apologizes to noone.

    Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    “When people see a strong horse and a weak horse, by nature they will like the strong horse.”

    • #10
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:05 am
    • 13 likes
  11. Member
    Gil Reich Post author

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):

    Gil Reich:

    Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel and the United States seem to have mostly worked out the contours of a peace deal which they and some Palestinian leaders will sign. It won’t be a final status Messianic Utopian all-is-solved deal. But it will likely include an official end to hostilities between Israel and some of her Arab neighbors, even if not immediate full normalization. It will bring greater freedom and prosperity, though not much democracy, to Palestinians and other Arabs across the region. It’s apparently not many months away.

     

    I’ll believe it when I see it. The Palestinians cannot be trusted. Deals have been signed before, and broken before the corresponding POTUS’s term was up. The only thing that gives me even a sliver of hope is that the Saudis seem to be pushing for something permanent, and even then I don’t think the Palestinians are smart enough to realize they’ve lost.

    They can sign all the pieces of paper they want, but it’ll be decades before I believe that the Palestinians have been pacified.

    I’m not trusting them or expecting anything from them. I am expecting Russia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Qatar to increase their military and economic cooperation with Israel and to stop financing Palestinian terror.

    • #11
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:16 am
    • 14 likes
  12. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Loved your post Gil

    Gil Reich: Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    Oh contraire. Obstacle,s and enemies of the republic should continue to be pounded. While the pearl clutchers kick up a dust storm, winning quietly continues under the dusty radar.

    Agree on leaving McCain alone now, but not before.

    This is Stalinist. John McCain and Mika Brzenski are not “Enemies of the Republic.” This kind of rhetoric is the sort of thing freedom loving classical liberals like we claim to be are supposed to be fighting against.

    From the Bush side of the party.

    Let them pound us, then say “thank you sir, may I have another “. Eventualy they will be reasonable and like us.

    No thanks. You are why we have Trump.

    Stalinism is what your philosophy brings us. Get a clue.

    Mika wants a country that looks nothing like the republic as founded. That makes her an enemy ( small e) of it.

    McCain stood in the way of overturning state controlled medicine. This makes him an obstacle of it.

    We already have Stalinism in our University’s.

    You would have use nice words why they intend to sillence us.

    • #12
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:23 am
    • 8 likes
  13. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):
    They can sign all the pieces of paper they want, but it’ll be decades before I believe that the Palestinians have been pacified.

    It will long be too soon to tell.

    • #13
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:31 am
    • 2 likes
  14. Contributor

    Thanks so much, @gilreich. You shared some news I had not heard. I am encouraged, in spite of the naysayers. And I will pray that whatever the pace, positive outcomes can occur.

    • #14
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:46 am
    • 6 likes
  15. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Loved your post Gil

    Gil Reich: Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    Oh contraire. Obstacle,s and enemies of the republic should continue to be pounded. While the pearl clutchers kick up a dust storm, winning quietly continues under the dusty radar.

    Agree on leaving McCain alone now, but not before.

    This is Stalinist. John McCain and Mika Brzenski are not “Enemies of the Republic.” This kind of rhetoric is the sort of thing freedom loving classical liberals like we claim to be are supposed to be fighting against.

     Following a policy dispute in the Senate, John McCain took to the floor and stated that Rand Paul was working for Vladimir Putin. Over the top rhetoric seems to be what politics is about lately. Democrats do it, so do Republicans of all stripes. 

     

    • #15
    • May 16, 2018 at 6:59 am
    • 6 likes
  16. Coolidge

    Jager (View Comment):

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Loved your post Gil

    Gil Reich: Those traits may be over the top when dealing with McCain and Morning Mika but they are mostly fantastic when dealing with Iran and Hamas.

    Oh contraire. Obstacle,s and enemies of the republic should continue to be pounded. While the pearl clutchers kick up a dust storm, winning quietly continues under the dusty radar.

    Agree on leaving McCain alone now, but not before.

    This is Stalinist. John McCain and Mika Brzenski are not “Enemies of the Republic.” This kind of rhetoric is the sort of thing freedom loving classical liberals like we claim to be are supposed to be fighting against.

    Following a policy dispute in the Senate, John McCain took to the floor and stated that Rand Paul was working for Vladimir Putin. Over the top rhetoric seems to be what politics is about lately. Democrats do it, so do Republicans of all stripes.

     

    And we should oppose it no matter where it comes from. 

    No matter who says it, calling one’s political opponents, “Enemies of the republic,” equating political disagreement with treason should be beyond the pale for anyone who wishes to be taken seriously. It is the sort of rhetoric used by totalitarians. It tells me that you* consider your opponent’s position to not only be socially unacceptable, but worthy of suppression by the state. 

    Although, I owe an apology to Stalin. Apparently it was Lenin who first used the term, “Enemy of the People” to describe political opposition.


    *I mean the generic “you” here.

    • #16
    • May 16, 2018 at 8:06 am
    • 3 likes
  17. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):
    No matter who says it, calling one’s political opponents, “Enemies of the republic,” equating political disagreement with treason should be beyond the pale for anyone who wishes to be taken seriously.

    I have no problem calling leftists “enemies of the Republic.” I mean it seriously, too.

    • #17
    • May 16, 2018 at 8:18 am
    • 7 likes
  18. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):
    It tells me that you* consider your opponent’s position to not only be socially unacceptable, but worthy of suppression by the state.

    Thank you UNF for reading so much into my few words.

    Thats, exactly what you did. Perhaps my words were poorly chosen. Let my ask you this.

    What term would you use for those who use the power of gov to spy on a Presidential candidate and then try to unseat him once elected. Then refuse Congressional oversight.

    Surely not opponents? I think it is safe to assume Mika celebrates this activity.

    Or, the power of state gov to go after republicans like Scott walker and his supporters with John doe laws. Raids in the middle of the night, then command silence.

    Are these people just opponents? Criminal of course, but are they friends of the republic?

    I could go on and on.

    No place in my few words did I suggest that the power of gov should be used to silence them.

    Let me define “pound”, since I was negligent by not being more specific.

    Pound: Trump should continue to verbally take to taske those who intend to destroy him and silence us.

    Stalinism/Leninism is afoot in this country for sure. We must fight it vigorously. However, not like George Bush fights.

    • #18
    • May 16, 2018 at 8:48 am
    • 6 likes
  19. Member

    My apologies Gil for being partially responsible for such negativity on your celebratory post.

    • #19
    • May 16, 2018 at 9:02 am
    • 6 likes
  20. Coolidge

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Thank you UNF for reading so much into my few words.

     

    I’m not the one who paraphrased Lenin in describing my political opponents.

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    What term would you use for those who use the power of gov to spy on a Presidential candidate and then try to unseat him once elected. Then refuse Congressional oversight.

     

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Or, the power of state gov to go after republicans like Scott walker and his supporters with John doe laws. Raids in the middle of the night, then command silence.

     

    I’d call them criminals, perhaps even wannabe tyrants.

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    I think it is safe to assume Mika celebrates this activity.

     

    [Citation Needed]

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    Let me define “pound”, since I was negligent by not being more specific.

    Pound: Trump should continue to verbally take to taske those who intend to destroy him and silence us.

     

    If you mean verbally, then you should not use the rhetoric of those who would declare opposition to be treasonous. Especially not when discussing a man who served his country honorably in the fight against the very people who used such rhetoric.

    The bottom line is don’t paraphrase Lenin and then get indignant when people point out that your rhetoric is Leninist.

    • #20
    • May 16, 2018 at 9:09 am
    • 2 likes
  21. Coolidge

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):

    My apologies Gil for being partially responsible for such negativity on your celebratory post.

    This we can agree on. I’m done.

    • #21
    • May 16, 2018 at 9:10 am
    • 2 likes
  22. Member

    Gil Reich: Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel and the United States seem to have mostly worked out the contours of a peace deal which they and some Palestinian leaders will sign

    In less helpful news our NATO “ally” Turkey has come out loudly against Israel and the United States. Claiming the US is ” a party to this crime against humanity” 

    http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2018/05/15/561820/Turkey-OIC–Binali-Yildirim–Recep-Tayyip-Erdogan

    It seems that our “friends” in Turkey think the death of 50 Hamas terrorists is some kind of genocide.

    https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/hamas-leader-says-50-gazans-killed-were-members-of-group/

     

    • #22
    • May 16, 2018 at 9:36 am
    • 7 likes
  23. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):
    The only thing that gives me even a sliver of hope is that the Saudis seem to be pushing for something permanent,

    And when the jihadis or the Iranians overthrow the House of Saud?

    • #23
    • May 16, 2018 at 10:48 am
    • 3 likes
  24. Member

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):
    Although, I owe an apology to Stalin. Apparently it was Lenin who first used the term, “Enemy of the People” to describe political opposition.

    Ibsen wrote “An Enemy of the People” in the early 1880s.

    • #24
    • May 16, 2018 at 10:51 am
    • 2 likes
  25. Thatcher

    Gil,

    I like your summary very much. Keep doing updates you’ve got all the targets in range. We should charge Erdogan for giving him another opportunity to bloviate. The death of 50 Hamas terrorists attacking Israel is now genocide. Let the Sultan emit hot gas for a while. Let the EU try to avoid their own terror problems by blaming Israel. They aren’t convincing their own people or anybody else.

    I don’t think the bloviation is selling anymore. Besides, winning with Trump is fun.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #25
    • May 16, 2018 at 10:51 am
    • 12 likes
  26. Thatcher

    I am not yet tired of all the winning.

    • #26
    • May 16, 2018 at 10:58 am
    • 6 likes
  27. Contributor

    Further to Jagers point: What your thoughts on Turkey calling for the Islamic world to “unite against Israel”? 

    • #27
    • May 16, 2018 at 11:00 am
    • 5 likes
  28. Member
    Gil Reich Post author

    Jager (View Comment):

    Gil Reich: Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel and the United States seem to have mostly worked out the contours of a peace deal which they and some Palestinian leaders will sign

    In less helpful news our NATO “ally” Turkey has come out loudly against Israel and the United States. Claiming the US is ” a party to this crime against humanity”

    http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2018/05/15/561820/Turkey-OIC–Binali-Yildirim–Recep-Tayyip-Erdogan

    It seems that our “friends” in Turkey think the death of 50 Hamas terrorists is some kind of genocide.

    https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/hamas-leader-says-50-gazans-killed-were-members-of-group/

     

    You’re not puncturing my optimism. Yes, to some degree we lost Turkey a decade ago. But:

    1. Israel & Turkey actually have a much better relationship than you’d think from the public dog & pony show. 

    2. We no longer have a president building American foreign policy on Turkey, Iran & the Muslim Brotherhood. 

     

    • #28
    • May 16, 2018 at 11:02 am
    • 11 likes
  29. Member
    Gil Reich Post author

    Israel P. (View Comment):

    Umbra of Nex, Fractus (View Comment):
    The only thing that gives me even a sliver of hope is that the Saudis seem to be pushing for something permanent,

    And when the jihadis or the Iranians overthrow the House of Saud?

    Yeah, that would be bad. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. 

    • #29
    • May 16, 2018 at 11:03 am
    • 5 likes
  30. Contributor

    I am quite pleased with the president’s Middle East policy.

    I disagree with attributing all the good news to him; Iran’s situation seems to have focused a lot of minds as has the recent defeat of ISIS (for which Trump deserves a good deal of credit).

    As Gil said, we don’t know how this all turns out — e.g., the North Korean summit looks like it’s off for now — but I think Trump is generally doing the right things here.

    • #30
    • May 16, 2018 at 11:13 am
    • 7 likes
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