The Corner

With Friends Like These . . .

Turkey’s ambassador has told a gaggle of U.S. reporters that Israel is about to lose its best friend in the region, but is Turkey really Israel’s best friend?

Turkey’s best friend in the region is likely Iran.  Erdogan has endorsed Omar Al-Bashir of Sudan and embraced an advisor who gave money to an al-Qaeda financier.

Saying Turkey is Israel’s best friend in the region is like Vladimir Putin warning Georgia that it will lose its best friend if it angers Russia, or North Korea warning South Korea that it will lose its best friend if it fails to hand over another couple hundred million dollars in aid.

That Israel doesn’t have many friends in the region is more a reflection of the region than of Israel.

Michael Rubin is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, senior lecturer at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Civil-Military Relations, and a senior editor of the Middle East Quarterly.

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