The articles on Israel’s troubles are proliferating. “Is Israel Over?” asked Benny Morris, the Israeli historian. The Wall Street Journal, among others, assessed Israel’s problems with Egypt and Turkey. (subscription) (NYT article) And this mess is all before the Palestinian push at the UN.
One challenge is that Israel’s alliance and public relations troubles are taken as confirmation of two rival explanations:
1. Israeli policy, especially on the Palestine issue, caused Egypt and Turkey to turn against Israel.
2. The world, including many in Egypt and Turkey, hate Israel, no matter what Israel does. (Thus, tinkering with Israeli policy or pressing Israel to make concessions is useless).
When Egyptians storm the Israeli embassy, those who adhere to #1 say, see, we should have had real negotiations with the Palestinians to pre-empt or undermine such protests. Proponents of #2 look and see a country Israel supposedly has been at peace with attacking diplomatic personnel, a big no-no. The Arabs will never accept us, they think.
So policymakers and people who support #1 or #2 both walk away from recent events thinking their argument has been further confirmed. That is not a recipe for bold thinking to get out of the current morass.