Hard Questions, Tough Answers

Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

August 22, 2016 - Russian-Iranian strategic cooperation and its ramifications

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses whether we are on the cusp of a major Middle East power reorientation; why Iran would, when the Islamic Republic has always insisted on “Neither East nor West”, allow Russian bombers to use the Hamadan air base to launch bomber strikes against anti-regime targets in Syria; Russia’s motive; how Moscow’s power plays in Turkey and Iran, neither necessarily a friend of the Arabs, are expanding its influence elsewhere in the Middle East; how all this affects Israel; how he assesses the U.S. response to greater Russian penetration of the region; and if a Netanyahu-Abbas summit, perhaps in Moscow, is likely.

 

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August 15, 2016 - North of Israel: Turkey, Russia, Aleppo

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses the significance of last week’s rapprochement in St. Petersburg between Russia’s Putin and Turkey’s Erdogan; where this leaves the US, Europe, and Israel; if we are witnessing, apropos Erdogan, Putin and Netanyahu, the evolution of regional leadership toward a kind of democratic-autocratic model; how Putin and Russia became so central to the Middle East drama; and why Aleppo is so important.

 

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses Minister of Defense Lieberman's response to last week's declaration by President Obama that the Israeli security establishment confirms that Iran is complying with the nuclear agreement, and why such needless confrontation over a done deal; how is Israel dealing with Hamas' announcement of two weeks ago that it would participate in West Bank and Gaza municipal elections scheduled for October 8, and how does Palestinian leader Abu Mazen hope to win the elections that he himself initiated; and the Hamas/World Vision story and why it is significant.

 

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses whether the Palestinian leadership's request to the Arab League to support its initiative to sue the British government is serious; whether minister for social equality Gila Gamliel's declaration that she is promoting a project to demand the restitution of property left behind in Arab countries by Jews who fled in the 1950s is an equally fruitless attempt to reverse the course of history; and why Netanyahu last week “apologized” to the Israeli Arab community and called upon it to “participate in Israeli society, en masse.”

 

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses what it will mean if Netanyahu’s ruling coalition's move in the Knesset to apply Israeli law to the settlement of Maaleh Adumim is approved; if last week's Saudi delegation visiting Israel, led by a retired general, was a breakthrough; whether, in the aftermath of the abortive military coup in Turkey, President Erdogan's purging of tens of thousands of ostensibly disloyal officers, educators and civil servants is an Islamist counter-revolution; how this development could affect Turkey domestically and how it could affect Israel and the region; and if Netanyahu, similar to what Erdogan is doing in Turkey, is attempting to clamp down on media.

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July 18, 2016 - Deterring human rights advocacy in Israel; terror in Nice; coup in Turkey

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses what’s wrong with the Knesset bill passed July 11th, that stigmatizes human rights NGOs (non-governmental organizations, or non-profits) in Israel by obliging them to constantly and blatantly publicize funding they receive from foreign governments; truck attack in Nice on Bastille Day, July 14; and what was relevant about the failed military coup in Turkey.

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses what’s behind the flurry of diplomatic and strategic activity, including Israel’s rapprochement with Turkey, Netanyahu's meeting in East Africa with seven regional leaders, and the Egyptian foreign minister visiting Israel for the first time in nine years; the strategic backdrop in East Africa; Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukry's presumed discussion with Netanyahu about Israeli-Turkish relations; Shukry and Netanyahu's statements Sunday concerning the need to renew some sort of Israeli-Palestinian peace or at least confidence-building process; whether the right-wing Netanyahu government with its strong pro-settler element really has anything to talk about with the Arabs concerning the Palestinian issue; and what’s next regarding establishing Israeli spheres of strategic influence in the region and beyond, and what might this signify for the Palestinian issue.

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July 05, 2016 - Turkey and Israel

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses Israel and Turkey's formula for reconciliation and normalizing of their relations and what this entails; if it is a somewhat one-sided deal: Israel seems to have achieved much more than Turkey; what are the Turkish weaknesses that Netanyahu leveraged; the Israel-Egypt-Turkey triangle; if there is a broad Israeli regional strategy at work here signaled by last week's deal with Turkey and this week's expansion of Israel’s ties with the countries of East Africa; and if Ankara’s quest to become the effective regional patron of Hamas in Gaza isn't potentially a problem for Israel.

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June 27, 2016 - All those new schemes for dealing with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses "new schemes" for dealing innovatively with the conflict, many of them unilateral, partial or piecemeal: the unilateral security plan presented by some 300 retired generals and senior security personnel known as “Commanders for Israeli security;” whether the commanders’ plan connect with the two-state security plan developed by a team of Americans, Israelis, Egyptians, Palestinians and Jordanians that was recently unveiled in Washington; the “Two States, One Homeland” plan; and a Jordanian-Palestinian confederation.

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June 20, 2016 - Barak on fascism, is ISIS losing, Lieberman on Gaza

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Yossi Alpher is an independent security analyst. He is the former director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University, a former senior official with the Mossad, and a former IDF intelligence officer. Views and positions expressed here are those of the writer, and do not necessarily represent APN's views and policy positions.

This week, Alpher discusses the prominent Israeli former government and security officials who spoke out last week very bluntly against Netanyahu and his government and whether this could this be the beginning of serious change; if ISIS is losing the battle for the Levant and if the Obama approach is winning; and whether there are lessons here for Israel regarding Hamas in Gaza.

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