Issues

Israel is not the cause of Middle East’s problems, US security strategy says

US President Donald Trump’s first National Security Strategy declares that Israeli is not the root cause of Middle East turmoil, while also pillorying Iran as the world’s leading sponsor of state-sponsored terrorism.

The document — designed to serve as a framework for the Trump administration’s approach to the world — says that while the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has long been regarded as the main obstacle to regional peace and prosperity, the rise of jihadist terror groups and Iran have made plain that this is not the case.

“For generations the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians has been understood as the prime irritant preventing peace and prosperity in the region. Today, the threats from jihadist terrorist organizations and the threat from Iran are creating the realization that Israel is not the cause of the region’s problems. States have increasingly found common interests with Israel in confronting common threats,” the document states.

The hard-hitting text released Monday also says the US “remains committed to helping facilitate a comprehensive peace agreement that is acceptable to both Israelis and Palestinians.”

The document — which has been 11 months in the making — is required by law, and is designed to form a framework for how America approaches the world.

Previous national security strategies have been released without much fanfare and served as guideposts, rather than doctrinal commandments.

But in this topsy-turvy administration, the document has taken on extra significance. Allies will now look to it for clarity about the intentions of the world’s preeminent economic and military power.

The text slams the Iranian nuclear deal and says Tehran is continuing to destabilize the Middle East.

“Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, has taken advantage of instability to expand its influence through partners and proxies, weapon proliferation, and funding. It continues to develop more capable ballistic missiles and intelligence capabilities, and it undertakes malicious cyber activities. These activities have continued unabated since the 2015 nuclear deal,” it reads.

 

Read More: Times of Israel