Thursday, August 02, 2018

Non-transitive haters

Reuters --

As tensions peaked last week, Israel shot down a Syrian warplane that it said had strayed into the Israeli-occupied Golan and warned Assad’s Iranian and Lebanese Hezbollah reinforcements against trying to deploy on the Syrian-held side. But Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman sounded more upbeat on Thursday as he described an Assad win as a given. “From our perspective, the situation is returning to how it was before the civil war, meaning there is a real address, someone responsible, and central rule,” Lieberman told reporters during a tour of air defense units in northern Israel. Asked whether Israel should be less wary of possible flare-ups on the Golan - much of which it seized from Syria in a 1967 war and annexed in a move not recognized abroad - Lieberman said: “I believe so. I think this is also in Assad’s interest.”

It is going to be fascinating to see whether the self-styled contrarians who love Bashar al-Assad and hate Israel, and switch effortlessly between those two themes, will be able to reconcile themselves to Israel being, actually OK, with their beloved Bashar staying in power. If nothing else, easing the Israel hate in line with Bashar's modus vivendi would make their dual stances look a little bit less on the edge of anti-Semitic.

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