July 4, 2014

Israel Challenging U.S. to Back the Kurds

Friedman & Mitchell, The New Republic

AP Photo

It is implausible that Israel believed it could lead international opinion on Kurdish independence; more likely, Israel aimed its statements at the U.S. When the 80,000-ton SCF Altai docked in Ashkelon, it remained in port for more than two and a half days—a moderately protracted stay for a tanker of that size unloading a shipment. Did Israel face U.S. pressure not to receive the Kurdish crude, with the tanker idling in port? It is one plausible explanation. If so, the dual Peres-Netanyahu statements constitute a sharp riposte. Israel proclaimed its support for a longtime covert friend. With so few reliable friends remaining, it seems to have publicly challenged the U.S. to do the same.

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TAGGED: Kurdistan Regional Government, Iraq, Kurds, Kurdistan, Middle East, Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu

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