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  • Author: Uzi Rubin
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s warning on the emergent Yemen-originating missile threat corresponds to Iran’s modus operandi of surrounding its foes with missile “rings of fire” and will enable Tehran to complete the missile encirclement of the Jewish state as a step toward its eventual demise. Israel must do its utmost to confront this new strategic threat by establishing an alert system and defense capabilities against Yemen-originating cruise and ballistic missiles, whatever the cost.
  • Topic: Security, Military Affairs, Geopolitics, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Iran, Middle East, Israel, Yemen
  • Author: Uzi Rubin
  • Publication Date: 02-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: Operation Shahid Soleimani, the Iranian revenge attack for the killing of Qassem Soleimani, was less spectacular than the Iranian attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities last September and was apparently controversial even within Iran’s top leadership. Still, Israel can learn lessons from it: that Iran’s regime is willing to take extraordinary risks when it feels humiliated; that in certain scenarios precision missiles can be as effective as combat aircraft; that even a few precision missiles can disrupt the operation of modern air bases; and that good public diplomacy is crucial for crisis management.
  • Topic: Military Strategy, Weapons , Crisis Management, Risk, Qassem Soleimani
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Iran, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Efraim Karsh
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: There is probably no more understated event in the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict than the San Remo Conference of April 1920. Convened for a mere week as part of the post-WWI peace conferences that created a new international order on the basis of indigenous self-rule and national self-determination, the San Remo conference appointed Britain as mandatory for Palestine with the specific task of “putting into effect the declaration originally made on November 2, 1917, by the British Government [i.e., the Balfour Declaration], and adopted by the other Allied Powers, in favour of the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.” This mandate was then ratified on July 24, 1922 by the Council of the League of Nations—the postwar world organization and the UN’s predecessor. The importance of the Palestine mandate cannot be overstated. Though falling short of the proposed Zionist formula that “Palestine should be reconstituted as the national home of the Jewish people,” it signified an unqualified recognition by the official representative of the will of the international community of the Jews as a national group—rather than a purely religious community—and acknowledgement of “the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine” as “the grounds for reconstituting their national home in the country.” It is a historical tragedy therefore that 100 years after this momentous event, the Palestinian leadership and its international champions remain entrenched in the rejection not only of the millenarian Jewish attachment to Palestine but of the very existence of a Jewish People (and by implication its right to statehood). Rather than keep trying to turn the clock backward at the certain cost of prolonging their people’s statelessness and suffering, it is time for this leadership to shed its century-long recalcitrance and opt for peace and reconciliation with their Israeli neighbors. And what can be a more auspicious timing for this process than the 100th anniversary of the San Remo Conference?
  • Topic: History, Zionism, Conflict, Negotiation, Peace
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel, Palestine
  • Author: Gershon Hacohen
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: This study explores the strategic-military implications of the establishment of a Palestinian state along the pre-June 1967 lines. Its central thesis is that the creation of such a state, on the heels of the IDF’s total withdrawal from the West Bank, will not only deprive Israel of defensible borders but will almost certainly lead to the advent of a terrorist entity like the one created in the Gaza Strip – at a stone’s throw from the Israeli heartland.
  • Topic: Security, Terrorism, Military Strategy, Self Determination, Occupation
  • Political Geography: Israel, Palestine, Gaza, West Bank
  • Author: Louis René Beres
  • Publication Date: 06-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: Israel’s presumptive nuclear deterrence posture depends upon several separate but intersecting factors. Most important, of course, are the country’s weapons, infrastructures, and missile defense capabilities. Less conspicuously urgent, but still important, are the principal defining structures of world politics. These include (as ever) the fundamentally anarchic system created after the 1648 Peace of Westphalia (“The State System”) and the more transient or temporary US-Russian rivalry. This essay casts attention on the latter set of factors, or “Cold War II.” Israel’s strategists should pay close attention to this critical expression of geopolitical “context.”
  • Topic: National Security, Nuclear Weapons, Infrastructure, Deterrence
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eurasia, Middle East, Israel, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Maxi Y. Blum
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: For decades, western armies have been working on developing a land-combat vehicle that would address the changing nature of warfare — notably fighting in densely populated urban and rural terrains — and new operational threats like mines, side bombs, and short-range rockets for purposes of ambush. But attempts to circumvent the use of expensive heavy armor by harnessing advanced sensory-fire and mobility technologies to neutralize potential threats before their actualization has been far from successful, leaving ground forces vulnerable and exposed. Development of a new land-combat vehicle will thus necessitate a highly inventive engineering and technological approach that slashes costs and weight of protective armor without compromising its effectiveness.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Military Affairs, Weapons
  • Political Geography: Israel, Global Focus
  • Author: Amnon Cavari, Elan Nyer
  • Publication Date: 06-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: American political leaders have supported the “special relationship” between the US and Israel since the earliest days of Israel’s existence. Support for Israel is invariably invoked during presidential campaigns and in party platforms. During their terms in office, US presidents regularly address issues relating to Israel and assert their commitment to Israel’s security.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, International Security, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: America, Israel
  • Author: C S Samuel Rajiv
  • Publication Date: 05-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies (BESA)
  • Abstract: This study examines Indian governmental responses to the three major Israeli military interventions in the Gaza Strip over the past decade. It reviews the unprecedented parliamentary debate that took place in India during Operation Protective Edge, when the government sidestepped opposition demands for a resolution critical of Israel. It also assesses the Modi government’s intention to inject new dynamism into the India-Israel relationship.
  • Topic: International Security, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: India, Israel