Saturday, March 19, 2016

Sweden's Palestinian Lobbyists - Nima Gholam Ali Pour

by Nima Gholam Ali Pour

The Swedish municipality of Malmö, with only 318,000 inhabitants, is providing tens of thousands of dollars in tax revenues each year to organizations that spread extreme anti-Israeli messages.

  • Apelgårdsskolan elementary school in Malmö lends its premises on Sundays to an association called Framtidsföreningen ["The Future Society"]. The organization holds a Sunday school, where, among other things, maps are handed out to children where Israel has been removed, and schoolbooks are distributed in which "resistance" against Israel is celebrated. Framtidsföreningen has also received $4500 from Malmö's recreational board since 2014.
  • That pro-Palestinian organizations will use tax-funded operations as a tool to spread hatred against Israel is a given. This means that organizations that spread hatred against Israel in Sweden in many cases have tax revenues at their disposal at several levels.
  • There are no effective lobbying organizations in Sweden that fight for the cause of Israel.

In recent years, aid that finances hatred against Israel has received much attention. Organizations such as NGO Monitor have shown time and again how European countries and international organizations provide financial support to projects in which the sole purpose is to spread lies about Israel and erode its legitimacy as a nation.

But the European war going on against Israel has deeper presence and is more widespread than just some European governments or international organizations providing assistance to organizations that are spreading hatred against Israel.

The Swedish municipality of Malmö, for instance, with only 318,000 inhabitants, is providing tens of thousands of dollars in tax revenues each year to organizations that spread extreme anti-Israeli messages.

The association Kontrakultur has, since 2012, received $167,000 in tax revenues from the municipality of Malmö. If you visit the website of Kontrakultur, you can see that two of their partners are the International Solidarity Movement Sweden and Isolera Israel ["Isolate Israel"]. Both the International Solidarity Movement and Isolera Israel are organizations that have extreme views on the Israel-Palestine conflict. Both organizations say they believe that Israel is an apartheid state conducting ethnic cleansing and is to be boycotted; they support Palestinian terrorism against Israelis, which they call "resistance."

When Isolera Israel in March 2015 carried out a campaign during "Israel Apartheid Week," when they sent out "apartheid inspectors" to Malmö's stores to encourage shop owners to remove Israeli products, they had their headquarters located on premises owned by the municipality of Malmö.

Apelgårdsskolan elementary school in Malmö lends its premises on Sundays to an association called Framtidsföreningen ["The Future Society"]. The organization holds a Sunday school, where, among other things, children are given maps from which Israel has been removed, and schoolbooks are distributed in which "resistance" against Israel is celebrated.

Framtidsföreningen has no business being in a Swedish school: it is a pro-Palestinian association that cooperates with organizations such as International Committee for Breaking the Siege of Gaza, one of the founding organizations behind the Freedom Flotilla Coalition.

Apelgårdsskolan is located in the area of Rosengård, which is, according to Swedish police, a "particularly vulnerable" area. According to the Swedish police's definition, there are, among other things in "particularly vulnerable" areas, parallel society structures, extremism, people traveling to take part in combat in conflict areas and a high concentration of crime. That the municipality of Malmö makes it possible to spread hatred against Israel among children in such an area is enabling a future war against Israel.

In addition to having used municipal premises to indoctrinate young children that Israel does not exist and teaching children that they should carry out militant actions against Israel, Framtidsföreningen has also received $4500 from Malmö's recreational board since 2014.

Apelgårdsskolan elementary school in Malmö (left) lends its premises to an association that holds a Sunday school, where children are given maps from which Israel has been removed, and books distributed in which "resistance" against Israel is celebrated. Right: Hillevi Larsson, a Social Democratic Member of Parliament representing a district of Malmö, shows off a Palestinian flag and a "map of Palestine" in which Israel does not exist.

Although these might seem shocking details to any sensible person, this kind of activity is normal in Sweden. Tobias Pettersson, Chairman of the pro-Israeli think tank Perspektiv På Israel ["Perspective on Israel"], sent information about Framtidsföreningen to Malmö's largest newspaper, Sydsvenskan. However, the newspaper's journalists responded that the subject was not something for them to cover.

No newspaper in Sweden has written anything about these events. The anti-racist organization Motargument ["Counterpoint"] wrote a blog about the events in Apelgårdsskolan but tried to downplay the incident by saying that it was just a matter of "Arabic-speaking pupils" who were having "Palestinian studies."

On March 3, the organization "Malmö's Young Muslims" held a lecture on municipal premises about "Palestinian lobbying in Sweden." This lecture was directed at young people and held by Adnan Abou-Chakra, a person who among other things, acts as translator when Hamas writes articles for Swedish newspapers. This lecture also took place in Rosengård. It is a mystery for anyone why a Swedish municipality should make it possible for young people to learn about "Palestinian lobbying in Sweden."

These are just some examples of how pro-Palestinian organizations that spread hatred against Israel or have extreme views on the Israel-Palestine conflict have created a local infrastructure in Malmö, financed by taxes.

They have managed to do this through effective lobbying. Beside the Sweden Democrats, there is no political party in Malmö that sees any of this as a problem. That pro-Palestinian organizations will use tax-funded operations as a tool to spread hatred against Israel is a given. This means that organizations in Sweden that spread hatred against Israel in many cases have tax revenues at their disposal at several levels.

While there are pro-Palestinian organizations on the municipal school premises that indoctrinate children that Israel is not on the map and teach young people how they should conduct lobbying on behalf of Palestinian causes, there are no effective lobbying organizations in Sweden that fight for the cause of Israel.

While municipal tax revenues go to organizations that spread hatred against Israel, the local synagogue is financing its own security without any financial support from the city of Malmö. Such an inequitable situation in itself shows how effective the pro-Palestinian groups have been in their lobbying.

Even when someone fights against anti-Semitism in Sweden, it is expected that the person condemn Israel. Siavosh Derakhti, who has received several awards for his fight against anti-Semitism in Sweden, and who met President Obama in 2013, wrote the following about Israel in an article from 2011; he tells young Muslims in Sweden why they should distance themselves from anti-Semitism:
"But we must also be critical of Israeli policies and military. Where there is oppression and discrimination against civilians in Palestine, we must show courage and hope for the future. We need to influence our politicians so that they can take up the fight in parliament and hopefully strengthen demands against Israeli policy and listen to the young people. The children and the civilian population in Palestine should live in peace and live in freedom. Israel must cease its military attacks and discrimination and the oppression against the Palestinian civilian population in the West Bank and Gaza. I think our politicians show little support for the Palestinians and the European Union must have the courage to strengthen the tone against Israel, possibly threatening a boycott if things continue. The attacks against the civilian population of Palestine must end. The world should boycott cooperation with Israel, as long as the country carries out attacks against civilians in Palestine."
Even the one person in Sweden who has been praised for his struggle against anti-Semitism evidently feels compelled to remind people how evil Israel is, and in contradiction to the facts on the ground there. Derakhti's approach towards Israel may also explain why he has received awards from the Swedish establishment.

The Palestinians may not be able to run a country, as the chaos in the Palestinian territories demonstrates, but they can apparently run Swedish politics better than anyone. As long as this imbalance, composed of Palestinian lobbying activities at all levels of Swedish policy-making -- from local to national -- exists, and is unopposed by any real lobbying for Israel's cause, then Sweden will be a pro-Palestinian country with a pro-Palestinian establishment.

This disinformation and imbalance also ensure that Swedish taxpayers, at all levels, support operations that spread hatred against Israel.

It is not that Swedish politicians have misunderstood anything, except facts about Israel; it is that a pro-Palestinian lobby has been very successful and has achieved all its goals, while whoever supports Israel has been either silent or passive and not taken to heart how effective grassroots organizations can be. You can be very charming, and if you are building pro-Palestinian grassroots organizations, it is easy to convince Swedish politicians.

There are many people who now analyze Sweden and ask how this country in northern Europe could recognize a State of Palestine so quickly and criticize Israel so much. It is the pro-Palestinian lobbying organizations that have caused this to happen. The only way to reverse the trend is to build or support effective pro-Israeli lobby organizations that are as ambitious as the pro-Palestinian lobby organizations.
If the people who support Israel do not confront these pro-Palestinian lobbyists, more countries like Sweden will become platforms from which to delegitimize Israel. This European confrontation is essential and of the most urgent, strategic importance.
Nima Gholam Ali Pour is a member of the board of education in the Swedish city of Malmö and is engaged in several Swedish think tanks concerned with the Middle East. He is also editor for the social conservative website Situation Malmö.  Follow Nima Gholam Ali Pour on Twitter and Facebook

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Are DHS Leaders Seeking an MVP Award From ISIS? - Michael Cutler

by Michael Cutler

The day after the San Bernardino terror attack, why exactly did USCIS managers block a team of ICE agents from entering their facility?

I am certain that the headline for my article has you wondering if I may have lost my mind or am so determined to attract attention that I went “over the top.”

I can assure you that I am neither insane nor am I attempting to sensationalize my description of the events surrounding the alleged interaction between ICE agents and managers at USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) in which the ICE agents were blocked from entering the USCIS facilities and denied access to the relevant immigration files.

USCIS is charged with providing a wide array of immigration benefits through the adjudications process, to aliens present in the United States.  This includes providing aliens with political asylum, conferring lawful immigrant status upon aliens, and providing aliens with United States citizenship through the naturalization process.

In a manner of speaking, USCIS is the locksmith to America's front door. An alien who has been granted lawful immigrant status and issued an Alien Registration Receipt Card (Green Card) or has become a United States citizen, may travel in and out of the United States at will.

Before we go any further, I want you to make an indelible note in your mind: USCIS currently adjudicates more than 6 million applications each and every year and would be charged with providing unknown millions of illegal aliens with lawful status should any sort of “immigration reform” program be enacted.

The 9/11 Commission made it clear that immigration benefits were the key to the 9/11 terrorist attack and, indeed, as I have noted in previous articles, terrorists such as Faisal Shahzad, the “Times Square Bomber,” was naturalized roughly a year before he attempted to detonate a bomb concealed in an SUV parked at Times Square.  The terrorist Tsarnaev brothers, who carried out the murderous rampage at the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013, had been granted political asylum along with other family member and become lawful immigrants.  In fact, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who, having been found guilty of committing numerous terror-related crimes and now sits on death row, became a naturalized America[n] shortly before he participated in that savage attack.

Both of those agencies operate under the aegis of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), an agency that for many reasons, I have, with great anger and frustration, come to refer to as the "Department of Homeland Surrender."

The incident that serves as the predication for my commentary is so outrageous that it is nearly impossible to imagine that it really occurred.  If this scene were included in a fictitious film the movie critics would have said that the storyline was ridiculous.  However, as the saying goes, “Truth is stranger than fiction.”

Rather than write about it in my words, I will provide you with a statement issued on March 15, 2016 by none other than United States Senator Ron Johnson, who chairs the Senate Homeland Security Committee that has oversight responsibility for the Department of Homeland Security.  He made the statement during a hearing that day on the topic, “The Security of U.S. Visa Programs.”

The statement as posted on the Senate Homeland Security Committee's website was titled “Chairman Johnson Reveals Lack of Cooperation Between USCIS and ICE In Aftermath of San Bernardino Attacks.”

For the sake of clarity, HSI (Homeland Security Investigations) is a component of ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement).  Leon Rodriguez, who was quoted at the end of Chairman Ron Johnson's statement, is the Director of USCIS.

Here is the text of Chairman Johnson's statement:

WASHINGTON — Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) revealed the lack of coordination between United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) during an incident at the San Bernardino USCIS office the day after the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif.
Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agents were alerted by the FBI that Enrique Marquez, who supplied the weapons that Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik used to carry out the attacks in San Bernardino on Dec. 2, 2015, was scheduled for an immigration hearing at USCIS in San Bernardino on Dec. 3, 2015, together with his wife. According to an HSI memo from earlier this year, when HSI agents arrived at the USCIS office to detain Marquez, the USCIS denied the HSI agents entry into the building and later refused to provide relevant immigration documents to HSI.
VIDEO: Watch Sen. Johnson’s remarks here.
Johnson, reading from the memo, said during the hearing:
“At approximately 12 p.m. on Dec. 3, the FBI informed HSI and the [Joint Terrorism Task Force] that FBI field interview agents learned that Marquez and his wife, Mariya Chernykh, were scheduled for a meeting at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office in San Bernardino for noon on Dec. 3.  HSI contacted the HSI special agent requesting a team of armed agents to respond to the San Bernardino USCIS office in order to detain Marquez until an FBI interview team could be dispatched. The special agent informed the HSI team that the officer in charge of USCIS would not let HSI agents in the building. . . . The special agent learned that Marquez and Chernykh did not show up for their meeting.  The special agent requested copies of the A-File in which USCIS refused. The special agent was allowed to take a photo of Chernykh’s photo contained within the A-file.”
Rodriguez replied, “Unfortunately it all happened so quickly that it was incorrectly perceived that our folks were trying to in some way obstruct what ICE was trying to do. Do we need to look at our protocols to make sure that those misunderstandings don’t occur? That is something that we may well need to do.”
I really want to believe Mr. Rodriguez. However, I don't, and apparently neither does Chairman Johnson.  This is not the first time DHS impeded an investigation -- even when there was a clear nexus to national security.  Before I provide you with yet another example of this, let us consider another statement made by Chairman Johnson, this one was issued on March 16, 2016, the day after the hearing.  The statement was posted under the title:

Johnson to DHS: Do Not Retaliate Against San Bernardino Whistleblowers 

Here is a copy of the text of the beginning of this statement:

WASHINGTON — Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, is asking the Department of Homeland Security’s management to refrain from retaliating against whistleblowers who have contacted the committee. Johnson sent letters to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson and DHS Inspector General John Roth on Wednesday after learning that DHS management is actively trying to identify which individuals furnished information to the committee used during Tuesday’s hearing on a breakdown in cooperation involving Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS).
“I am concerned that ICE is attempting to identify and retaliate against whistleblowers who revealed a lack of cooperation between USCIS and ICE in the aftermath of the terror attacks in San Bernardino. ICE has a track record of retaliating against whistleblowers as in the case of [Homeland Security Investigations] Agent Taylor Johnson,” said Sen. Johnson. “Those who have the courage to come forward should not be retaliated against.”
Letter to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson can be found here.
Letter to DHS Inspector General John Roth can be found here.
Chairman Johnson's reference to HSI Agent Taylor Johnson is one that needs clarification.  Taylor was an ICE (HSI) Senior Special Agent.  On June 11, 2015 Fox News reported on her situation in an article that was titled “Whistleblowers testify on gov’t backlash, DHS agent says bosses tried to strip her gun rights.”

Another website, “Liberty Unyielding,” also covered Taylor Johnson's plight in an article titled “Corrupt mistreatment of federal whistleblowers, including threat to gun rights” that reported on corruption in the EB-5 Visa Program that provides lawful immigrant status to aliens who invest a minimum of $500,000 to create companies in the United States.  Allegedly the corruption involved high-level politicians,

On February 3, 2015 ABC News reported on the EB-5 Visa Program in a truly troubling report, “Feds Investigating Iran Ties to Firm Involved in US Visa Program.”

On August 12, 2015 ABC News followed up with a report, “Dozens of Fraud Investigations Target US Immigration Program for Rich Foreigners."

Here is an excerpt from this article:

The report discloses for the first time that between January 2013 and 2015, the SEC received more than 100 “tips, complaints and referrals of possible securities fraud” connected to the EB-5 program, and there are currently 59 open investigations by various agencies into alleged EB-5 scams. In one recently announced case in California, the SEC went so far as to describe an EB-5 visa center that tried to sell investors on an oil drilling business as “a Ponzi-like scheme.”
The little-known, but immensely popular immigration program was the focus of a two part ABC News investigation earlier this year that looked into claims the program had created an avenue for criminals and spies to enter the country, and had become a magnet for fraud.
HSI Senior Special Agent Taylor Johnson was recently fired by the DHS. The truth has set her free -- free to seek a new job.

Michael Cutler is a retired Senior Special Agent of the former INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service) whose career spanned some 30 years. He served as an Immigration Inspector, Immigration Adjudications Officer and spent 26 years as an agent who rotated through all of the squads within the Investigations Branch. For half of his career he was assigned to the Drug Task Force. He has testified before well over a dozen congressional hearings, provided testimony to the 9/11 Commission as well as state legislative hearings around the United States and at trials where immigration is at issue. He hosts his radio show, “The Michael Cutler Hour,” on Friday evenings on BlogTalk Radio. His personal website is


Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

The Obama Doctrine, Unplugged - Caroline Glick

by Caroline Glick

The principles that truly define the president's foreign policy.

Originally published by the Jerusalem Post.

It was ironic that the day The Atlantic monthly published what was supposed to be the definitive work on US President Barack Obama’s foreign policy, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that he was removing the bulk of his military forces from Syria.

Jeffrey Goldberg’s long profile titled, “The Obama Doctrine,” sought to define the theoretical underpinning of Obama’s foreign policy. Goldberg devoted the bulk of his twenty thousand-word corpus to analyzing Obama’s policies in Syria, where, he offered, Obama finally broke free from foreign policy community’s constraints, and set out on his own course.

Reading Obama’s view of Putin the same day the Russian leader surprised the US in announcing his decision to immediately withdraw Russian forces from Syria was instructive.

Putin, Obama sneered, is “constantly interested in being seen as our peer and working with us, because he’s not completely stupid. He understands that Russia’s overall position in the world is significantly diminished. And the fact that he invades Crimea or is trying to prop up [Syrian President Bashar] Assad doesn’t suddenly make him a player.”

Moreover, Obama said, Putin’s decision to deploy his forces to Syria would have no impact on Russia’s global influence.”

“The notion that somehow Russia is in a stronger position now, in Syria or in Ukraine, than they were before they invaded Ukraine or before he had to deploy military forces to Syria is to fundamentally misunderstand the nature of power in foreign affairs, or in the world general. Real power means you can get what you want without having to exert violence.”

Although they sound smart, Obama’s statements were utter hogwash.

By sending his forces to Syria, Putin no only secured Russians military bases in Syria for the foreseeable future. Putin vastly improved Russia’s international position – and did so at America’s expense.

Putin exposed the emptiness of Obama’s global leadership in the campaign against ISIS. Among other things, Putin called Obama’s bluff by threatening US combat jets with his air defense batteries.

Rather than confront Putin for his refusal to deconflict his forces from US fighter craft, Obama ordered US forces to end manned aircraft sorties in the area around Russia’s air defenses and reduced the vaunted US anti-ISIS campaign to drone strikes. In other words, he allowed Russia to create a no-fly zone against the US Air Force.

Obama’s readiness to stand back and allow Putin to replace America as the superpower power broker in the Middle East isn’t all that surprising. In his conversations with Goldberg, Obama derided the need uphold America’s commitments.

Obama’s first open move to upend America’s global credibility – what Goldberg refers to as his “liberation day,” came on August 30, 2013. That day, Obama decided not to attack Syrian regime targets in retaliation for Assad’s use of chemical weapons gas against Syrian civilians in the Damascus suburb of Ghouta on August 21. Some 1,400 people were reportedly murdered in the strike.

“The moment Obama decided not to enforce his redline and bomb Syria,” Goldberg wrote, “he broke with what he calls, derisively, ‘the Washington playbook.’” Obama told Goldberg, “I’m very proud of that moment,” when he shuffled off the “overwhelming weight of conventional wisdom and the machinery of our national-security apparatus.”

Just as the foreign policy establishment – including Obama’s advisers and cabinet secretaries – was mortified by his decision to trample on US credibility that day, so its members remain flummoxed by his refusal to deal seriously with the growing threat that ISIS poses to key US interests.

Goldberg gave voice to that frustration by citing a conversation he had with Secretary of State John Kerry.

Obama stubbornly maintains that unlike his view of climate change, which he believes is a “potential existential threat,” ISIS does not represent “an existential threat to the United States,” Kerry in contrast is certain that ISIS is a first order strategic threat.

ISIS, Kerry intoned, “is a threat to everybody in the world.”

It is “overtly committed to destroying people in the West and in the Middle East.

“Imagine what would happen if we don’t stand and fight them... [Y]ou could have allies and friends of ours fall. You could have a massive migration into Europe that destroys Europe, leads to the pure destruction of Europe, ends the European project, and everyone runs for cover and you’ve got the 1930s all over again, with nationalism and fascism and other things breaking out. Of course we have an interest in this, a huge interest in this.”

Goldberg didn’t mention when Kerry made those remarks, but they are more a description of reality than a warning of things to come. Every month 100,000 Syrians make their way to Europe. Popular opposition to this deluge of Islamic migrants – nearly none of whom has experience with Western liberal culture – is fomenting the rise of nationalist forces in country after country, as the success of Germany’s far right AfD party in Sunday’s regional elections made clear.

But Obama remains unmoved. As he sees it, the threat that racist Americans will respond to the threat of ISIS with racism directed against Muslims is greater than the threat that ISIS poses to the US, its allies and the global order.

And this brings us to the heart of the principles that guide Obama’s foreign policy.

Goldberg, like others who have come in contact with Obama over the years, admires his emotional detachment, his “coolness,” or what Goldberg views as his “Spockian” rationality – after Star Trek’s Mr. Spock.

Obama, in other words, is cool, calm and collected.

He works with this head. He’s smart and calculating.

So why then is his foreign policy so destructive? Why has he allowed – indeed enabled – Russia to return to the Middle East for the first time since the 1970s? Why has he allowed the ISIS cancer to grow? Why has the man who entered office promising to eradicate nuclear weapons paved the way for Iran to acquire them? Why has Obama allowed ISIS and Assad use chemical weapons at will? Why did he overthrow Muammar Gaddafi and then do nothing to prevent ISIS from taking over large swaths of Libya? Why has he alienated and repeatedly undercut every US ally in the Middle East and many US allies in Europe? None of this seems very smart.

To understand what Obama wants, it is important to note the four consistent strands of Obama’s foreign policy that appeared throughout Goldberg’s article.

First, from the opening days of his presidency, Obama has continuously stressed what he views as America’s moral flaws and its unfitness and unworthiness to serve as the world’s most powerful nation. Although Goldberg noted that Obama grudgingly came to acknowledge that America is the indispensable nation, he also showed Obama’s resentment of that state of affairs and Obama’s keen interest in restraining American power.

For instance, Obama told Goldberg, “One of the reasons I am so focused on taking action multilaterally where our direct interests are not at stake is that multilateralism regulates hubris.”

Obama, Goldberg explained, “consistently invokes what he understands to be America’s past failures overseas as a means of checking American self-righteousness.”

“We have history,” Obama told him. “We have history in Iran, we have history in Indonesia and Central America. So we have to be mindful of our history when we start talking about intervening, and understand the source of other people’s suspicions.”

The second consistent aspect of Obama’s policies is that he consistently rejects securing the traditional goals of US foreign policy – opposing US enemies, siding with US allies, preventing the spread of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons, to US enemies.

Not only does Obama oppose traditional policy goals such as preventing Russia from competing with the US in the Middle East. Obama insists that the US is incompetent to implement them successfully and that US allies are wrong to expect the US to side with them against their common enemies.

Third, Obama has consistently refused to see the dangers of the policies that he has adopted and blames others when the dangers materialize and his policies fail.

For instance, whereas the US intelligence community opposed overthrowing Gaddafi, Obama told Goldberg that the intelligence community failed to tell him how unstable Libyan society was.

While Obama famously referred to ISIS as “the jayvee team,” and has refused to take serious steps to destroy the genocidal group, Obama blames the US military for misinforming him about the potency of the ISIS threat.

Finally, Obama has consistently undercut US allies in his attempts to appease US enemies. The obvious example of this is his ill-treatment of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel throughout his tenure in office. But in his conversations with Goldberg, Obama viciously attacked the leaders of Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, France and Britain. All of them exhibited varying degrees of unworthiness of his support as he embarked on policy trajectories they viewed as threatening and counterproductive.

As an intelligent man, as the consequences of these four policy lines began smacking him in the face, Obama could have been expected to change course. George W. Bush for instance changed his foreign policy stance from one of sparing internationalism before September 11 to democratic interventionism in its aftermath. And when his democratic interventionism failed in Iraq, he abandoned it in favor of a more traditional realist approach.

Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter were also quick to change their policies when they were faced with evidence they had failed. Ronald Reagan changed his policy for bringing down the Soviet Union from one of confrontation to one based on cooperation when Mikhail Gorbachev came to power.

In other words, unlike his recent predecessors Obama has never shifted gears. He has never found fault with his judgment. He has never revisited a decision.

It is easy to chalk this up to arrogance. Obama is certainly one of the most arrogant leaders the US has ever had – if not the most arrogant president in US history. But given his intelligence, it is hard to escape the impression that Obama’s epic arrogance, which makes it impossible for him to admit failure, is just as much of a style preference as a character trait. That is, arrogance, like coolness and “Spockian” rationalism, is an attitude that he has adopted on purpose.

What that purpose may be is indicated by the consistent strands of his foreign policy. Obama’s belief in America’s moral turpitude, his eagerness to trample US credibility, reject traditional US policy goals; his refusal to see the dangers inherent in his radical policies or acknowledge their failures let alone accept responsibility for their failures, and his trampling of US allies while appeasing its enemies all point to Obama’s true doctrine.

Caroline Glick is the Director of the David Horowitz Freedom Center's Israel Security Project and the Senior Contributing Editor of The Jerusalem Post. For more information on Ms. Glick's work, visit


Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Shifting Eastern Mediterranean Alliances - Emmanuel Karagiannis

by Emmanuel Karagiannis

Clearly, the development of energy resources and their transportation will have far-reaching geopolitical implications for the Eastern Mediterranean and its nations

The exploitation of energy resources in the Eastern Mediterranean has drawn together hitherto estranged states. In August 2013, Cyprus, Greece, and Israel signed onto the "EuroAsia Interconnector" project, which would install a 2000-megawatt underwater electric cable (illustrated above) to connect their power grids and to be a means by which "three nations ... [can] enhance their growth and prosperity" and build a "bridge of friendship between our nations."
The Eastern Mediterranean is changing fast with its estimated 122 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas reserves (the equivalent of 21 billion barrels of oil) already having an impact on regional patterns of amity and enmity.[1] With Israel and Cyprus well underway to becoming gas exporters, the problematic Israeli-Lebanese and Cypriot-Turkish relationships have been further strained. At the same time, energy cooperation has been the driving force behind the nascent Greek-Cypriot-Israeli partnership, manifested in rapidly growing defense and economic cooperation. Clearly, the development of energy resources and their transportation will have far-reaching geopolitical implications for the Eastern Mediterranean and its nations.

The Strategic Significance of the Gas Reserves

Natural gas is the fastest growing source of energy in the world, currently accounting for 22 percent of total global energy consumption.[2] It is both affordable and more environmentally friendly than other commercially feasible options, resulting in an increasing demand even in an era of dropping oil prices. That demand seems likely to be met in large part by the newly discovered gas reserves of the Eastern Mediterranean.

Israel has the potential to become an important regional producer of liquefied natural gas. Its Tamar field, with estimated reserves of 9.7 trillion cubic feet (tcf), came online in 2013 while its Leviathan gas field (above), with a potential of 16 tcf, is slated to be ready for production in 2017.
Israel, for one, has the potential to become an important regional producer.[3] Its Tamar field was confirmed to have estimated reserves of 9.7 tcf[4] while its Leviathan gas field has the potential of producing up to 16 tcf.[5] Meanwhile, in November 2011, U.S.-based Noble Energy announced a major gas discovery south of Cyprus: The Aphrodite field was estimated to contain 7 tcf.[6] In February 2013, a seismic survey south of Crete indicated that rich hydrocarbon resources may soon be found in Greek waters.[7] Most recently, the Italian company Eni announced the discovery of a huge gas field off the coast of Egypt.[8]

For reasons of geographical proximity, these Mediterranean energy resources concern first and foremost the European Union—the world's third largest energy consumer behind China and the United States.[9] While oil is still the dominant fuel, accounting for 33.8 percent of total EU energy consumption, natural gas comes in second at 23.4 percent.[10] The Eastern Mediterranean gas reserves have three distinct advantages for European governments (and companies) and are thus viewed by them as a strategic priority. First, due to their smaller sizes and populations, the needs of Israel and Cyprus are relatively low and most of their gas could be exported. Second, Eastern Mediterranean gas could partly cover Europe's energy needs and thereby decrease its dependence on an increasingly volatile Russia. Finally, since both Israel and Cyprus lack the capital and the offshore drilling technology to develop gas reserves on their own, foreign energy companies have identified them as investment opportunities that could generate significant financial returns.

As the Middle East implodes, security of energy supply has become an important policy objective for the EU. Indeed, there is a consensus among European governments that new initiatives are needed to address energy challenges. The EU is already directly involved to some extent in Eastern Mediterranean energy affairs because Greece and Cyprus are member states while Turkey is a candidate for membership and has a customs union with the EU. Although the governments of the EU and Israel are often at odds politically, economic relations between Jerusalem and Brussels are close and multifaceted.

The development of Israeli and Cypriot gas fields could help strengthen Europe's energy security. Currently, European countries import liquefied natural gas (LNG) from politically unstable countries such as Nigeria and Algeria. But the Eastern Mediterranean could serve as a third gas "corridor" for Europe, alongside Russian gas and the southeast European pipelines for Azeri gas. The Italian Eni company, the British Premier Oil, and the Dutch Oranje-Nassau Energie have clearly shown interest by bidding in the second round of licensing for natural gas exploration in the Cypriot exclusive economic zone (EEZ),[11] a sea zone prescribed by the United
Nations over which a state has special rights.

The U.S. administration views Eastern Mediterranean gas as an alternative source for its European allies who depend heavily on Russian supplies.
Given the prominence of the Middle East for U.S. energy policy, it is hardly surprising that the gas finds in Israel and Cyprus have drawn Washington's attention as well. Although the U.S. is likely to become the largest gas producer in the world as a result of increased use of shale gas, the administration views Eastern Mediterranean gas as an alternative source for its European allies who depend heavily on Russian supplies.[12] Within the private sector, the American company, Noble Energy, has played a leading role in the exploration process; it has a 40 percent stake in the Leviathan fields, a 36 percent stake in Tamar, and a 70 percent stake in Aphrodite.

Not surprisingly, these discoveries have attracted Moscow's interest as well due to a potential, adverse impact on its gas exports to European markets. Russian energy companies, which often act as the Kremlin's long-arm, are particularly active in the region. In February 2013, for example, Gazprom signed a 20-year deal with the Israeli Levant LNG Marketing Corporation to purchase liquefied natural gas exclusively from the Tamar field.[13] Then in December 2013, the Russian company SoyuzNefteGas signed an agreement with the Assad regime to explore part of Syria's exclusive economic zone. One month later Putin signed an investment agreement with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to develop gas fields off the Gaza Strip.[14]

Warming Israeli-Greek Relations

Despite past support for the Palestinians, newly-elected Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras (left) of the left-wing SYRIZA party, here with Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu, has sought to strengthen ties with the Jewish state. Greece's location makes it a natural bridge between the energy-rich Eastern Mediterranean and energy-consuming Europe while Israel is now poised to become a major natural gas producer. Thus, Greece and Israel share significant energy interests.
Energy considerations have a long history of influencing the course of relations between states, and the new gas discoveries are no exception to this rule, affecting Israel's relations with both Greece and Cyprus.

Greek-Israeli relations have been frosty for decades. The postwar Greek governments typically followed a pro-Arab foreign policy in order to protect the large Greek community in Egypt, secure Arab support on the Cyprus dispute in the United Nations, and maintain access to cheap Arab oil.[15] While there was de facto recognition of the Jewish State in 1949, legal recognition needed to wait until 1990 under the right-wing Mitsotakis government. But the formation of a Turkish-Israeli strategic partnership in the mid-1990s provoked a strong backlash with Athens reverting to its pro-Arab policy.[16]

This policy, too, has changed with the rise of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his Islamist Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, AKP) in Turkey since the early 2000s. With Athens alarmed by Ankara's growing regional assertiveness, and Jerusalem disturbed by the new regime's fiercely anti-Israel approach, Greek-Israeli relations improved rapidly with the two countries signing a string of agreements in the fields of security, energy, trade, and tourism, and exchanging official visits at the ministerial, presidential, and prime-ministerial levels.[17] In March 2012, the air-naval exercise Noble Dina, involving U.S., Israeli, and Greek forces, was conducted in the Aegean Sea while, a month later, a joint Greek-Israeli air exercise was held in central Greece. Most recently, Minister of Defense Panos Kammenos stated that "[Greek] defense planning should take into account friends and allies who seek defense cooperation in the region. And I clearly mean eastward toward Israel."[18]

Athens's new Israel policy has been largely unaffected by the frequent change of governments in recent years. The last three prime ministers before the current one—George Papandreou (2009-11), Loukas Papadimos (2011-12), and Antonis Samaras (2012-15)—all met with Israeli officials and concluded agreements, all the more striking given the political and ideological differences among them: Papandreou is a moderate, left-of-center politician; Papadimos is known as a liberal technocrat, and Samaras, a right-wing politician.

In the wake of the economic crisis that has roiled domestic Greek politics and the austerity measures that the EU has sought to impose on Athens, Greeks took to the polls in January 2015 and brought to power the left-wing SYRIZA (Greek acronym of the Coalition of the Radical Left) party, in coalition with the small, right-wing party, the Independent Greeks. This caused considerable alarm in Jerusalem as many senior SYRIZA officials have strong pro-Palestinian sympathies: European Member of Parliament Sofia Sakorafa, for one, is a self-proclaimed friend of Hamas while Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has participated in pro-Palestinian rallies. In late December 2015, the Greek parliament passed a non-binding resolution recommending recognition of "Palestine" as a state.

And yet, the SYRIZA-led government has not distanced itself from Jerusalem. Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias identified Turkey as a source of threats[19] while Minister of Defense Kammenos, leader of the Independent Greeks, harbors strong pro-U.S. and pro-Israeli views.[20] In late November 2015, Tsipras visited Israel and, yet again, on January 27, 2016, together with six members of his cabinet when they held a joint meeting with the Israeli government.[21] So it seems likely that the Greek-Israeli partnership will continue.

Athens is seeking bids for an Eastern Mediterranean pipeline to carry Israeli and Cypriot gas to Europe.
Beyond common concerns about Turkey's intentions, Athens and Jerusalem share significant energy interests. Both countries want to implement the 1982 U.N. 
Convention of the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to facilitate the exploration and exploitation of the seabed;[22] and both maintain that the Eastern Mediterranean could be unilaterally developed through its division into exclusive economic zones of 200 nautical miles. In contrast, Ankara has not signed on to UNCLOS and favors a settlement in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean that would take perceived Turkish interests into greater account.

Moreover, Greece's location makes it a natural bridge between the energy-rich Eastern Mediterranean, including Israeli fields, and energy-consuming Europe, and Greeks see the country as a hub for bringing Eastern Mediterranean gas to European markets. In March 2014, Athens announced an international tender for a feasibility study of the Eastern Mediterranean pipeline to carry Israeli and Cypriot gas to Europe via Crete and the mainland.[23] While the proposed pipeline would be rather expensive and pass through disputed waters, Russian intervention in the Crimea and eastern Ukraine has given new momentum to the project as the EU looks for alternative sources of natural gas.[24] The European Commission has included the proposed pipeline in its list of "Projects of Common Interests" that could receive financial support.[25]

If Jerusalem and Nicosia decide to opt for liquefaction of their gas resources, then Greek-owned shipping could also play an important role in transporting liquid gas to the international market. During his visit to Israel in November 2015, Tsipras stated,

One of the main issues in our discussions today was [sic] the opportunities arising in the fields of energy in the Eastern Mediterranean ... We are examining ways to cooperate in research, drilling, and the transportation of gas from Israel to Europe.[26]
While energy is not the sole factor contributing to the improvement of bilateral relations, it has certainly played a crucial role in the convergence of Greek and Israeli interests in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Jerusalem and Nicosia

The development and exploitation of Eastern Mediterranean energy resources have also given a boost to Israeli-Cypriot relations. Despite geographical proximity, the two countries have largely ignored each other for years. For most Israelis, Cyprus is either the site where Holocaust survivors were forcibly interned by the British (1946-49) as they sought refuge in mandatory Palestine or the closest place where couples unable or unwilling to contract a religious marriage in Israel are able to enter into a civil marriage.

For its part, Nicosia traditionally took a pro-Arab line in diplomatic settings that differed little from neighboring Greece; and just like in Greece, the AKP-induced chill in Turkish-Israeli relations had a warming effect on Cypriot-Israeli relations. In March 2011, Israeli president Shimon Peres hosted his Cypriot counterpart, President Demetris Christofias, who reciprocated this hospitality in November. Both sides came to view each other as potential counterbalances to Turkey's presence in the Eastern Mediterranean. Cypriot defense minister Dimitris Iliadis signed an agreement on the "Mutual Protection of Confidential Information" in January 2012 with his Israeli counterpart, Ehud Barak,[27] and a month later, Netanyahu paid a visit to Nicosia, the first ever by an Israeli prime minister, to discuss energy and defense cooperation. According to press reports, the Cypriot navy is planning to buy two Israeli-manufactured hi-tech offshore patrol vessels in order to patrol its exclusive economic zone.[28]

The energy dimension of the nascent Israeli-Cypriot relationship is particularly strong. Nicosia has announced plans to build a liquefied natural gas plant in its Vassilikos industrial area to process its gas. Since the current gas finds are not large enough to make this multi-billion dollar project economically viable, Nicosia has suggested to Jerusalem that the two countries pool their gas reserves to form a single producing unit. In 2013, Minister of Energy Yiorgos Lakkotrypis declared:

[W]e feel that through a close collaboration with Israel, we will be able to be a major player in the world energy market, something that might be too hard for each country to achieve individually.[29]
The future of the Israeli-Cypriot partnership will also depend on the export route of the Israeli gas. Jerusalem has examined a number of options for the optimum utilization of its gas fields but probably prefers to export gas westward in order to improve its relations with European countries.[30] From the Israeli perspective, energy cooperation with Greece and Cyprus could build a new web of alliances with the EU that would help Jerusalem to break out of its increasing geopolitical isolation. The Netanyahu government even lobbied on behalf of Greece in Europe and the United States for an economy recovery plan.[31] In late March 2012, during an energy conference in Athens, then Israeli minister of energy Uzi Landau spoke of "an axis of Greece, Cyprus, and Israel and possibly more countries, which will offer an anchor of stability."[32] In August 2013, the three countries signed an agreement to install a 2000-megawatt underwater electric cable to connect their power grids—the first of its kind to connect Europe and Asia.[33]

Most recently, in December 2015, a series of trilateral consultations was held in Jerusalem in which a set of issues were taken up and discussed, with energy development topping the list. The parties agreed to further promote trilateral consultations and to meet on a regular basis, beginning with a meeting of their heads of state in Nicosia on January 28, 2016.[34]

Lebanon, Cyprus, and Israel

While revenues from the sale of oil and gas can bring wealth and prosperity to societies, they also have the potential to upset regional balances of power. In the Eastern Mediterranean, where countries have been locked in conflicts over territory for decades, gas discoveries seem likely to increase the stakes. Contested ownership of gas resources has, in fact, destabilized already strained relations between Israel and Lebanon as well as between Turkey and Cyprus.

Although a delimitation agreement between Lebanon and Cyprus was signed in January 2007, the Lebanese parliament has refused to ratify it to date, and Hezbollah declared the agreement

null and void because the Lebanese side that signed it had its official capacity revoked ... The sea, like land, is a one hundred percent legitimate Lebanese right, and we shall defend it with all our strength.[35]
When in December 2010, Nicosia signed an agreement with Jerusalem demarcating their maritime borders, Beirut accused both states of violating its maritime rights.[36] The following year, in a televised speech marking the fifth anniversary of Hezbollah's 2006 war with Israel, the group's secretary general, Hassan Nasrallah, threatened Israel with a strike against its energy infrastructure:

We warn Israel against extending its hands to this area and steal[ing] Lebanon's resources from Lebanese waters ... Whoever harms our future oil facilities in Lebanese territorial waters, its own facilities will be targeted.[37]
These are not hollow threats. Hezbollah has the military capacity to attack Israel's offshore gas platforms should it choose to do so. The 2006 war revealed that its vast arsenal of missiles and rockets includes Chinese-manufactured C-802 anti-ship missiles (range 75 miles) and Zelzal-2 rockets (range 125-250 miles).[38] For its part, the Israeli navy is acquiring at least two 1,200-ton patrol-class vessels, along with additional unmanned aerial vehicles and missile-armed, remote-control gunboats.[39] In this way, Jerusalem seeks to deter possible raids from Lebanon. The protection and exploitation of gas reserves is thus seen by the Israeli leadership as a matter of national security.

Turkey, Cyprus, and Israel

The relationship between Turkey and Cyprus is yet another example of a long-standing conflict with few prospects of imminent resolution, and the AKP's rise to power has only exacerbated the situation.

Turkey's strongman, Islamist Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (left), seen here at the World Economic Forum, Davos, in 2009, publicly berating Israel's then-president Shimon Peres for alleged Israeli misconduct, has managed to alienate—and alarm—Eastern Mediterranean neighbors with frequent outbursts and occasional saberrattling. This has led Cyprus, Israel, and Greece, the area's potential energy producers and transporters, to seek closer ties that would have been inconceivable a decade ago.
In Erdoğan's increasingly paranoid worldview, the possible economic and diplomatic revival of Cyprus as a result of gas development poses a clear and present danger to Turkish national security. In September 2011, Ankara signed a continental shelf delimitation agreement with the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus," and shortly afterward, the Turkish state oil company (TPAO) started its first drilling near the occupied Cypriot city of Famagusta.

While Ankara has invited foreign companies to explore its Mediterranean coast for energy resources, only the Royal Dutch/Shell has thus far expressed interest.[40] In late October 2014, a Turkish research vessel entered the Cypriot EEZ to collect seismic data. Nicosia viewed this as a violation of its sovereign rights, since it had already licensed parts of its EEZ to foreign energy companies.[41]

Israeli and Turkish officials have recently concluded secret talks about bilateral reconciliation.
The energy factor has also internationalized the "Cyprus Problem," creating a new point of friction between Ankara and Jerusalem. The Turkish government did not anticipate the rapid improvement of Israeli-Cypriot relations and fears that the bilateral cooperation will not be limited to the energy sector. Even before this development, Erdoğan had threatened Jerusalem over its gas exploration initiatives, warning that while "Israel has begun to declare that it has the right to act in exclusive economic areas in the Mediterranean...[it] will not be owner of this right."[42] For its part Jerusalem has not remained passive, requesting Cypriot permission for the use of the Paphos air base by Israeli fighter jets.[43] In early November 2015, the two countries conducted the second Onisilos-Gideon military exercise in the western part of the island.

The internationalization of the "Cyprus Problem" extends well beyond the region. Chinese companies have already bid for gas exploration and liquefaction projects in the Eastern Mediterranean and are negotiating an agreement with the Cypriot government to purchase LNG by 2020. Consequently, Beijing has closely followed the Cyprus peace negotiations.[44]

An Engine for Conflict Resolution?

The Eastern Mediterranean energy boom has helped warm traditionally chilly bilateral relationships between some countries while aggravating already strained relations with others. Can it also become an engine for promoting regional cooperation?

While the last few years have seen a great deal of saber-rattling out of Ankara, the likelihood of a military confrontation between Cyprus and Turkey, or Israel and Turkey, seems small. The construction and operation of energy infrastructure (e.g., pipelines, refineries, natural gas plants) is a costly business requiring political stability, and Ankara may not wish to undermine its role as an energy transit state. Indeed, Israeli and Turkish officials have recently concluded secret talks about bilateral reconciliation that covered, among other items, the laying of a natural gas pipeline between the two countries. This would allow Turkey to reduce its energy dependence on Russia (relations with which have worsened following the downing of a Russian fighter jet in November 2015) as well as to open up a new market for Israel's natural gas projects off its coast.[45]

In addition, Ankara has offered to build a "peace pipeline" to transport Cypriot gas to European markets via Turkish territory.[46] Nicosia has not rejected this plan provided there is a resolution to the "Cyprus problem," including the reunification of the island and the withdrawal of Turkish troops from the northern section. This bolsters the argument, advanced by the U.S. State Department among others, that gas profits could contribute to the island's unification as both Greek and Turkish Cypriots would have major additional incentives to accept a peace deal.[47] It is no coincidence that the special representative for regional energy cooperation for the newly-established State Department's Bureau of Energy Resources is based in the U.S. embassy in Nicosia.[48]

This optimism is rooted in the long-held, liberal view of international relations positing that economic benefits resulting from energy transportation can help resolve political conflicts. Yet if history offers any guide, an economic boom attending hydrocarbons exports can just as often lead to ethnocentrism and economic nationalism as to goodwill and shared prosperity. The production of large quantities of oil and natural gas in the North Sea, for example, has strengthened Scottish nationalism and may eventually lead to Scotland's secession from the United Kingdom. Likewise, the Clinton administration's promotion of a "peace pipeline" to carry Azerbaijani oil through the contested area of Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia to the Turkish market failed because Armenia did not wish to make the necessary territorial concessions to Azerbaijan.[49] Then again, in 2004, Georgian leader Mikheil Saakashvili floated the construction of a Russian-Georgian oil pipeline through the breakaway republic of Abkhazia to facilitate a solution to the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict, only to be rebuffed by both Russia and Abkhazia.[50] The proposed Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline had the same fate in 2009 when the Indian government announced its decision not to participate in the project for security reasons.[51]

Evidently, such pipelines have failed to materialize because states were neither willing to surrender territory nor comfortable depending on hostile neighbors in return for possible economic benefits. Those who envisage the prospect of a "peace pipeline" positively affecting the current negotiations between Greek and Turkish Cypriots for the resolution of the "Cyprus Problem" may find themselves seriously disappointed.


The new substantial gas discoveries in the Eastern Mediterranean are rapidly transforming regional orientations. Energy interests have brought Israel closer than ever diplomatically to Cyprus and Greece and have played an important role in the apparent thaw in Israeli-Turkish relations. At the same time, energy has generated new tensions between producing countries and countries that feel excluded from the regional natural gas development opportunities. Relations between Turkey and Cyprus as well as between Israel and Lebanon, poor at best, have come under further strain.

U.S. and European interests will be well served by the emergence of the Eastern Mediterranean as a gas-exporting region.
Undoubtedly, U.S. and European interests will be well served by the emergence of the Eastern Mediterranean as a gas-exporting region. However, this will only be possible if there is a resolution to the ownership issue that can accelerate the pace of private investment in the regional gas industry.[52]
Without a region-wide legal agreement, energy companies may not be able to secure the necessary funding to develop and implement gas projects. Washington, which enjoys good relations with all Eastern Mediterranean countries, could act as a broker in hosting multilateral regional talks to defuse tensions and promote mutual understanding between countries in the region.

Emmanuel Karagiannis is senior lecturer at the department of defense studies, King's College, London, and author of Political Islam in Central Asia (Routledge, 2010) and Energy and Security in the Caucasus (Routledge, 2002).

[1] "Natural Gas Potential Assessed in Eastern Mediterranean," U.S. Geological Survey, Office of Communication, Reston, Va., Aug. 4, 2010.
[2] "International Energy Outlook 2013," Office of Communications, U.S. Energy Information Administration, Washington, D.C., July 25, 2013.
[3] Brenda Shaffer, "Israel—New Natural Gas Producer in the Mediterranean," Energy Policy, Sept. 2011, pp. 5379-87.
[4] Haaretz (Tel Aviv), Aug. 13, 2009.
[5] "Israel and its natural resources: What a gas!" The Economist, Nov. 11, 2010.
[6] Cyprus Mail (Nicosia), Oct. 4, 2013.
[7] Kathimerini (Neo Faliro, Gr.), Feb. 27, 2013.
[8] BBC News, Aug. 20, 2015.
[9] "Total Energy Consumption, 2014," Global Energy Statistical Yearbook 2015, Enerdata, Grenoble, accessed Jan. 15, 2016.
[10] EU Energy Market in 2014 (Luxemburg: Publication House of the European Union, The European Commission, 2014), p. 6.
[11] "Second Licensing Round—Hydrocarbons Exploration," Ministry of Energy, Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Republic of Cyprus, Nicosia, accessed Dec. 29, 2015.
[12] Middle East Online (London), Aug. 6, 2013.
[13] RIA Novosti (Moscow), Feb. 26, 2013.
[14] Ed Blanche, "Enter the Bear," The Middle East, Mar. 2014, pp. 29-30.
[15] John Sakkas, "Greece, Arab World and Israel: A Troubled Triangle in the Eastern Mediterranean," Defensor Pacis (Athens), Mar. 2007, pp. 95-104.
[16] Amikam Nachmani, Turkey-Israel Strategic Partnership (Raman Gan: The BESA Center for Strategic Studies, 1999), pp. 1-10.
[17] The Washington Post, Oct. 21, 2010.
[18] The Times of Israel (Jerusalem), Feb. 11, 2015.
[19] Sigma Live (Nicosia), Nov. 30, 2015.
[20] The Jerusalem Post, July 19, 2015.
[21] Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs, "Israel and Greece hold Government-to-Government Consultation," Jan. 27, 2016.
[22] "Israel's Candidature for IMO Council 2014-2015," Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sept. 9, 2013.
[23] Reuters, Aug. 10, 2014.
[24] New Europe (Brussels), Mar. 11, 2014.
[25] "Projects of Common Interests," The European Commission, Brussels, Oct. 14, 2013.
[26] Kathimerini, Nov. 25, 2015.
[27] Today's Zaman (Istanbul), July 3, 2012.
[28] Cyprus Mail, Dec. 18, 2013.
[29] Hürriyet (Istanbul), May 9, 2013.
[30] Simon Henderson, "Natural Gas Export Options for Israel and Cyprus," German Marshall Fund of the United States, Washington, D.C., Sept. 10, 2013.
[31] The Jerusalem Post, Mar. 6, 2011.
[32] Kathimerini, Mar. 28, 2012.
[33] Cyprus Mail, Aug. 9, 2013.
[34] Joint Statement: Second Political Consultations at the level of Secretaries General of Israel, Greece and Cyprus MFA's—17/12/2015, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nicosia.
[35] Al-Akhbar (Beirut), Oct. 27, 2012.
[36] YNet News (Tel Aviv), July 10, 2011.
[37] The Daily Star (Beirut), July 27, 2011.
[38] BBC News, Aug. 3, 2006.
[39] United Press International, May 23, 2013.
[40] Hürriyet, Nov. 23, 2011.
[41] The Guardian (London), Nov. 10, 2014.
[42] Simon Henderson, "Turkey's Threat to Israel's New Gas Riches," Policywatch, no. 1844, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Washington, D.C., Sept. 13, 2011.
[43] The Jerusalem Post, July 2, 2012.
[44] Li Guofu, "China: An Emerging Power in the Mediterranean," in Daniela Huber, et al., eds., The Mediterranean Region in a Multipolar World: Evolving Relations with Russia, China, India, Brazil, (Washington, D.C.: The German Marshall Fund of the United States, 2013), pp. 11-9; "Will Cyprus Become a New Investment Heaven for China?" China Radio International (Beijing), Oct. 31, 2013; Chinese ambassador Liu Xinsheng, interview, Cyprus Mail, Jan. 5, 2015.
[45] The Wall Street Journal, Dec. 18, 2015.
[46] Hürriyet, May 27, 2013.
[47] Sigma Live, July 24, 2015; Ethnos (Athens), Mar. 29, 2012.
[48] Cyprus Mail, Feb. 9, 2012.
[49] John J. Maresca, "A Peace Pipeline to End the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict," Caspian Crossroads, Winter 1995, pp. 17-8.
[50] George Anjaparidze and Cory Welt, "A Georgian-Russian Pipeline: For Peace or Profit?" Eurasianet (New York), Mar. 8, 2004.
[51] The Hindu (Chennai, Madras), Nov. 25, 2013.
[52] James Stocker, "No EEZ Solution: The Politics of Oil and Gas in the Eastern Mediterranean," Middle East Journal, Autumn 2012, pp. 579-97.

Emmanuel Karagiannis


Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.