According to Israel's former Minister of Defense, Moshe Ya'alon, Iran poses a much greater risk to the Middle East - and the rest of the world - than does ISIS.
A coalition of Syrian, Iranian and Hezbollah forces has assembled only 5 miles (8 km) from Israel's northern border. Israel is not its immediate objective, but it is very much on the minds of Assad and his military partners.
Almost immediately after the US, Russia and Syria's "ceasefire" began on Monday night, a "spillover" mortar exploded in Israel's Golan Heights. The official interpretation is that it was accidental. Nonetheless, Israel responded "as if" it was deliberate. When Jerusalem's jets struck back, they were fired on by Syrian surface-to-air missiles. Was an Israeli plane shot down?
For Russia and Iran, Turkey and Iraq, and the USA, there are two irritating wildcards in the Middle East: Israel and the Kurds. Seth J. Frantzman, Op-Ed editor at the Jerusalem Post, has made several visits to Kurdish front lines. Who are the Kurds? Frantzman explains...
When it comes to Syria, Turkey could sing Meghan Trainor's tune, All About That Bass, but with its own lyrics: "It's all about the Kurds, 'bout the Kurds, not ISIS." In fact, the war against ISIS has had amazing effects, uniting the US and Turks, Kurds and Syrian rebels, Russia and Iran, even Moscow and Ankara. What would any of them do without Islamic State?