Israel’s successful extraction of special military-political dividends on the issue of confrontation with Iran stands as a testimony to the fact that Tel Aviv has been the biggest beneficiaries in the Middle East since Donald Trump came to power.
After 2017, the United States unilaterally broke off a nuclear deal with Iran, launched a policy of “maximum pressure” on Israel’s biggest geopolitical enemy and placed the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) on its list of foreign “terrorist organizations.”
If that wasn’t enough, till date, the volume of oil exports from Iran, the key source of income of the Islamic Republic, has fallen to a historic low and the US / Israel alliance aims to further bring down the revenue to a complete halt.
In the context of the growing US-Iranian confrontation, Israel is solving many strategic and tactical issues with huge benefits for itself: from rapprochement with the Arab monarchies of the Persian Gulf to the latest weapons from the United States, Israel is leaving no stone unturned to reap all the benefits while it can.
Speaking a month ago, on July 1, at the Herzliya Conference on National Security, Regional and International Issues in Jerusalem, the director of Israel’s Mossad Intelligence Agency – Yossi Cohen confirmed about the improving ties with Arab countries. A significant part of Cohen’s speech was devoted to Iran and the “threats” emanating from Tehran.
The head of the Mossad said that for over 40 years, Tehran tried to undermine the Middle East, take the position of the regional hegemon and put Israel as a target of hostility and hatred, to achieve our destruction. “
Yossi Cohen said that Iran, when in July 2015 concluded a nuclear deal with world powers (Russia, the USA, China, Great Britain, France and Germany), did not treat its obligations in good faith. According to the head of Israeli foreign intelligence, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed “four years earlier, was a terrible agreement.”
Addressing the latest events in the Middle East in relation to the issue of Iran generating “threats” to regional and international security, Cohen expressed confidence that Tehran is behind the recent attacks on tankers in the Persian Gulf.
Commentators noted that the director of Mossad was the first high-ranking official in Israel to publicly accuse Iran’s IRGC of attacking tankers and oil infrastructure in the Persian Gulf.
“I say with confidence that Iran is behind these attacks: they were approved by the Iranian leadership and implemented by the IRGC,” Cohen emphasized.
According to Cohen, the corps and Iranian intelligence, reporting directly to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, also “carried out deadly attacks in Europe and created a network of 300 agents in Africa. Cohen also accused Iran of creating operational bases in Syria and for the Lebanese terror organization-“ Hezbollah “.”
Cohen added that “at the moment there is a rare opportunity to achieve a comprehensive peace in the Middle East.” He believes that the Arab monarchies, which “are also tired of Iranian aggression,” are ready to begin co-operation with Israel, although they still have not established diplomatic relations with the Jewish state.
“The Arab countries are expanding ties (with Israel), which are so far invisible to the eyes,” said the head of intelligence. Rapprochement with the Arabs on the anti-Iranian platform seems to be a “historic opportunity” for the military-political leadership of Israel.
“Mossad has found a rare opportunity, apparently the first in the history of the Middle East, to achieve a regional understanding that would lead to a comprehensive peace agreement in the region,” said the Israeli foreign intelligence chief.
“Common interests, the struggle against rivals such as Iran and jihadist terrorism, close relations with the White House and open channels of communication with the Kremlin – all this creates a great opportunity.”
At the same time, Cohen warned Iran that Israel would not allow Tehran to have nuclear weapons, as well as the creation of Iranian bases in Syria.
“Iran is the main sponsor of terrorist organizations in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. Israeli intelligence sources say that in the past two years, Iran has transferred more than $ 100 million to Hamas and Islamic Jihad, most of which was dedicated to the military buildup in both organizations,” said Cohen.
On behalf of the military-political leadership of the country, Cohen made it clear that Israeli airstrikes on pro-Iranian forces in Syria will continue, despite the delivery of Damascus Russian S-300 anti-aircraft missile systems.
“Iran and Hezbollah are trying to transfer their bases to northern Syria, mistakenly believing that it will be difficult for us to get to them,” said the head of the Mossad. It is Israel’s foreign intelligence that is at the forefront of efforts to rapprochement with key Arab countries in the region in the confrontation with Iran.
Israel-Arab Nations Growing Ties
According to EurAsian Times analysis, all the latest visits by representatives of the Israeli leadership were coordinated precisely through the foreign intelligence services, given the absence of official diplomatic relations.
Moreover, Mossad and its Arab partners, for example, represented by the General Intelligence Service of Saudi Arabia, have established a rather intensive communication channel through which information is especially exchanged about Tehran’s “hostile actions”.
Israel is primarily interested in Iranian activity in the Gaza Strip, Lebanon and Syria. The Israelis are trying to supplement their own intelligence in these areas with information from the Egyptian and Saudi secret services. Thus, the largest Arab monarchy in recent years has expanded its agent network in Lebanon, relying on local Sunni political forces.
The Israelis, in turn, are ready to share with Riyadh and other Arabian nations information about Iran’s activity in Yemen, where the local Shiite Hussite rebels, as well as in Bahrain and other countries of the region, conduct military operations against the Saudi coalition.
At the same time, Mossad and Israel’s military intelligence (AMAN) do not rely only on one of the region’s best intelligence networks, but also their advanced technological capabilities including satellite tracking.
Bridging Israel-Arab Gap To Counter Iran
Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz paid a two-day working visit (June 30 – July 1) to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. A few months earlier, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with the Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Saeed. The continued meetings of representatives of the Israeli authorities with Arabian counterparts only indicates the willingness of both groups to formally commence diplomatic relations.
Earlier, many Arab nations recognized the fallacy of isolating Israel and refusing to engage with TelAviv. Relations between Arab states and Israel must change to help progress towards peace with the Palestinians.
This was stated in an interview with the local edition of The National in March this year by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates, Anwar Mohammed Gargash. According to the UAE Foreign Minister, the previous decision of many Arab countries not to hold any dialogue with Israel only complicated the Palestinian problem for decades.
“Many, many years ago, when the Arab decision was made not to talk with Israel, it was a very, very wrong decision, looking back,” said the head of the Emirate’s foreign ministry. “Obviously, there is a need to keep communication lines open.”
The visit of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Oman and the establishment of contact with this monarchy in the Persian Gulf followed after the “long and hidden efforts of the Mossad.”
It is important to note that Israel began developing a strategy of rapprochement with the Arab monarchies almost immediately after the appearance of Iran and Hezbollah in Syria.
Earlier it became known that back in 2014, the former Mossad director Tamir Pardo (2011−2015) held a secret meeting with representatives of the Saudi authorities in Riyadh. The kingdom was then concerned about improving relations between the US and Iran.
It is alleged that Prime Minister Netanyahu also met Prince Bandar bin Sultan al-Saud in 2014 who then headed the Kingdom’s National Security Council. The meeting was held in a third country, the name of which is not specified.
It is believed that Israel is constantly pushing the current American administration to force events in Iran, even to the point of launching a massive attack against the critical infrastructure of the Islamic Republic.
In fact, neither Israel nor the USA is in a hurry, they strictly adhere to the course of “tightening the noose around the neck” of Iran. The mere five-fold drop in Tehran’s oil revenues gives Americans, Israelis, and Saudis confidence that they have chosen the right modus-operandi for choking Iran.