Arguably, the biggest news from the first meeting between PM Netanyahu and President Trump was not anything they said. Rather, it was the warmth between the men. Both are tough, and Trump remains unpredictable. Still, the camaraderie between the two bodes well for their ability to meaningfully negotiate. In this context, then, there are also a number of intriguing issues and policies that directly impact Israel's security: Iran, a regional peace deal, the Palestinians, settlements and more.
The Palestinian Authority is pivoting toward Persia while its counterpart in Gaza, Hamas, is pivoting toward ISIS. Not only is the story important in its own right, the details it contains is testimony to the extent of Israeli intelligence. The methods by which it obtained the particulars of this report are an undisclosed but provocative tease. When Israel's enemies secretly meet, their meetings are no so secret as they think.
Apparently, the larger framework of Trump's support for Israel is a coalition of armed forces to defeat ISIS throughout the region - and to push Iran back inside its borders. With "consequences that are unforeseen," the prospect of a long-term, international army is a Trump-Putin "earthquake" that is "sending tremors through Middle East."
What are Trump's positions regarding the Jewish State and the issues that it faces? What will Netanyahu encounter whe he meets with Trump on Wednesday? Three days before that meeting, an interview with the US President was published by Israel's largest daily paper, Israel Hayom. Based on things Trump said, and would not say, Jerusalem continues to adapt to a fast-moving US president whose support for Israel is in a context that is still coming into focus.
In an announcement that Jerusalem did not expect, Russia has signaled its intent to provide high-tech weapons to the armed forces of Syria. The problem is that Damascus remains the puppet of Iran and a sibling puppet with Lebanon's "Party of Allah." Their visceral commitment to Israel's destruction is at least as strong as their desire to defeat ISIS. Accordingly, Jerusalem wonders: will these high-tech weapons be added to Hezbollah's vast arsenal for use against the Jewish state?