A Growing Russian-Israeli Alliance?

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Visiting Russia during the controversial legislative (Duma) elections last December, Avigdor Liberman stated that the “elections were absolutely fair, free and democratic.”  Taken as an endorsement of Putin, this statement cemented the warm relationship between the two.

The relationship between the two states is founded on the realization that over a million Israeli Jews (and non-Jews) from the former Soviet Union live in Israel and have kept their traditions and heritage alive during the past two decades.  The Russian-speaking community in Israel holds a wide variety of positions of influence in Israeli society.  They have integrated well into Israeli economic, scientific and cultural life, and hence form a vital bridge between the two states by promoting closer ties.

The bilateral relations, however, are secondary to the wider strategic interests of the two states in the Middle East region.  Radical Islam, as a by-product of the “Arab Spring” poses a threat to both Russia and Israel.  Russia is concerned that the “Arab Spring” may influence and radicalize its own Muslim population.  Israel is challenged by the victories of the Muslim Brotherhood in several Arab states and especially in Egypt.  And Jordan as well might succumb to the Muslim Brotherhood triumph.  These realities, coupled with the pro-Islamist policies of Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan, present another set of challenges for both Russia and Israel.

In light of these circumstances in the Middle East, Russia considers Israel a potential asset in its efforts to deal with its economic, political, strategic, and security challenges.  Israel is regarded as a strong regional power that might help Russia regain parity with the U.S. in the region.  For Israel, moving Russia away from its enemies – Iran, and Syria – would greatly enhance Israel’s security.

Putin’s visit to Israel comes amid a realignment of forces in the Middle East, with Russia willing to reassess its foreign policy in order to meet emerging political challenges.  Under these circumstances, it is reasonable to assume that Russia is willing to strengthen cooperation with Israel in a bid to promote its national interests.  Considering the threat posed to both countries by the rise of Islamism, a Russian-Israeli partnership has the potential to benefit both countries.  Moreover, in view of the rapidly changing balance of power in the Middle East, this alliance could potentially stabilize an unstable region during a time of great uncertainty.

Prime Minister Netanyahu will no doubt be weighing the possibility of a second Obama term as he meets with Putin, and that prospect alone would call for a more solid relationship with Russia.

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  • Jimi Belton

    The very thought that this could be a help in stabilizing affairs in the ME, and add to the security of Israel is sheer lunicy, madness…..Putin is as full of himself as is our 0zamb0…..both are total narcissists, up to their gills…..Putin is the worst kind of wolf in sheep clothings……Bring it on, as The Bible speaks of G0d putting a hook into the mouth of Gog and Magog….Russia, and its Ruler….and draw them to their great destruction in the Valley of Megiddo……The time of Jacob`s trouble is nigh, even at the door…..Heaven guide you Benjamin Netanyahu….

  • logdon

    I often watch the Russian English speaking news channel RT where a real alternative view is offered.

    There's plenty I disagree with but the real teeth grinding comes when American leftists are in discussion groups or interviewed.

    You'll be happily rafting along with the general vibe which often focuses on non military intervention in ME affairs and supported by what we're seeing in Libya. Then…..

    Bang!! From out of nowhere the Israel bashing commences. It's not the Russians but Americans launching a tirade of utter hate based on provable falsehoods such as 'apartheid state', 'zionist military complex', 'slaughter of Arabs' and all the rest which we know only too well.

    And, believe it or not considering his Marxist credentials Obama is despised. Maybe they, who have faced this ideology first hand know the real truth.

    Obama is a cossetted American (for now anyway) college boy dilettante dabbling at arms length in theory and race based dogma which has absolutely no connection with the real communism which stifled Russia for half a century.

    To them he's a mere amateur and poseur of epic proportions surrounded by tenured college professors and Ivy League armchair warriors for whom class struggle is something learned about in books rather than the streets.

    These Russians are the sons and daughters of the revolution and they are only too aware of the massive drain imposed by the corruption created when power is absolute.

    As for Israel? Good for them. Obama anti-semitism is plain for all to see and if the old adage about enemy's enemy hold true Putin seems like a good bet.

    OK. Putin may be electorally corrupt but is Obama's anti voter ID stance any better?

    • Looking4Sanity

      In short, what you're saying is that Obama is "the most useful of useful idiots". I'd have to agree.

    • SCREW SOCIALISM

      Considering the hatred for Obama from the left,I am hopeful that Romney will defeat Obama.

      • Arius

        I will be happy to see the Big O loose the election to Romney, but at the same time I know that historical track that the West is on will not change no matter who wins the election. The Left and Right are leading the death march of the West.

  • Richard G.

    A gutsy article to be sure. It's theme underscores the terrible political fallout from Obama's abandonment of
    America's traditional allies and friends in the Middle East.

  • Marty

    Israel can't be picky when it comes to allies and supporters. Even Greece, one the most anti-semitic countries in europe, has been consulting the Israeli military. Apparently, a few european countries have made an effort to stop believing their own myths and propaganda and are becoming aware of the islamic menace. After all, Greece and Russia have a bad history with islam, especially the turkish variety. At the same time, russia and greece are hardly trustworthy, given their long record of hostility to Israel. The Israelis should be careful, but open to new initiatives. Obviously, anything they do, such as go on living, will be considered unhelpful by the obama administration.

    • Looking4Sanity

      "Israel can't be picky when it comes to allies and supporters."

      Yes. It really can. More importantly, it SHOULD!

  • SCREW SOCIALISM

    Israel would be utterly foolish to trust Tzar Putins Russia.

    • Arius

      Just as it would be foolish for Israel to trust the Big O's America.

  • Jim

    I read a lot about how bad Putin is. Almost all is superficial accusations with out specific details or evidence. Did he stuff the ballot boxes. Oh my gosh;that never happens in America now does it.? Unlike our corrupt congress which is essentially an employee of Business or unions the Duma did not try to trip up Putin when he chased the oligarchy out of Russia ; the Russian public is all the better for it.
    Putin invited the Israeli engineers to come back to Russia with out any restrictions on their religious practices.
    Dennis proclaimed that Putin is not an anti semite but Dennis preferred democracy. also be present.
    Dennis there is democracy in turkey,hows it working for you?

  • WilliamJamesWard

    Goldilocks and the big bad wolf……..surely this story has not been lost to Bibi Netanyahu, my
    what big teeth you have Vladimir and is that a gun in your pocket?………………William

  • Schlomotion

    It's going to be a real hoot if Israel and Hasbara have to start trumpeting the virtues of Vladimir Putin 24/7. I wonder how long it would take to rework the whole FPM shebang to start saying Putin is a right wing conservative, friend of Israel and champion of republican values.

    • reader

      It's already a hoot that Obama's "I'll be more flexible after election" has not impressed Mr. KGB. Apparently, he's not watching the elections you are watching, troll. Guess, who is watching the right elections.

      • Schlomotion

        By what I just read here, Jews love Putin more than they love Obama.

        • reader

          So, what does it tell you about the elections?

          • http://www.therussianstore.com/Wool-Russian-Shawls.html Russian Shawls

            that's a good news at least if Israel will be bombed or someone or other countries are going to go war on them at least russia is always there to help them.

  • Gamaliel

    Just because a country buys Israeli weapons does not mean it's a friend of Israel. All it means is that Israel makes good weapons. Turkey has bought a lot of Israeli weapons. Is it a friend of Israel?

    Putin was not elected fairly. There were a lot of beatings and stuffing of ballot boxes and intimidation of the press. Journalists who oppose Putin have been murdered.

    Putin is suppoting Iran which is the greatest threat not only to the U.S. but to Israel as well. Some friend.

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  • Boris

    Putin and Russia never been and never will be friends of jewish people. Their aims and behaivior for the years proves it undoubtly. Liberman’s mingeling with one of our enemies is confusing and even harmful.

  • Gemae

    "Putin’s trip comes amidst the controversial role Russia is playing in the civil war currently unfolding in Syria."

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