Weekend long read

1) At the INSS Gallia Lindenstrauss and Remi Daniel analyse ‘Normalization between Turkey and Israel’.

“The decision by Turkey and Israel to normalize their relations stems from several processes that brought the Turkish side to push for normalization and the Israeli side to respond affirmatively. Yet alongside the serious motivations of the two sides to continue this process, there are issues that could become obstacles. Among them are the developments between Israel and the Palestinians, Turkey-US relations, the dynamics of Turkey’s integration in processes related to the Abraham Accords, and the nature of future Israeli plans regarding gas exports. Nonetheless, coping with challenges related to these issues will be easier with senior diplomatic representation present in both countries.”

2) David May and Zachary Fesen discuss the Palestinian Authority’s ‘Palestine 194’ campaign at the National Interest.

“Mahmoud Abbas visited Germany last week to build international support for the Palestine 194 campaign—an attempt to achieve Palestinian statehood via UN approval rather than negotiating with Israel. The odds are long, but the Palestinian Authority (PA) president often turns to promises of statehood to distract from his increasing authoritarianism. Yet rather than galvanizing support, Abbas is actually empowering his nemesis—Hamas.”

3) At the JCPA Yoni Ben Menachem explains how ‘Hussein al-Sheikh Plans to Take Over the Fatah Movement’.

“The Palestinian Authority’s succession battle has gone into high gear. Hussein al-Sheikh, confidant and designated successor of 86-year-old PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, has begun an essential process of taking over the Fatah movement in the territories.

Al-Sheikh plans to take control of the Fatah leadership by convening the Eighth Fatah Conference, which will elect the movement’s institutions. Through internal elections, al-Sheikh aims to remove several of his rivals from the leadership and thereby pave his way to becoming Fatah’s official candidate in the presidential elections once Abbas leaves the political stage.”

4) WINEP’s Aaron Y Zelin analyses ‘Jawlani’s “State of the Union”’.

“In recent years, Abu Muhammad al-Jawlani, the leader of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), has conducted and promoted a series of meetings with different actors in the areas that HTS controls. Those meetings that HTS promotes online usually happen in spurts. Of course, they can’t tell us everything about what is going on in HTS-controlled territory or the group’s plans for the future, but these meetings do provide some insights worth examining when viewing them over time.”

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