Jerusalem, Sept. 19 - Any peace, be it cold peace, is better than any form of violence or war, said Amos Gilad, the senior advisor to Israel’s Defense Ministry.
Maj.-Gen. (ret.) Gilad said that Israel’s peace with Egypt is crucial amid a changing Middle East landscape and that the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is committed to its peace with Israel.
The serious challenge for Israel is to protect lives and prevent violence, he added. Thanks to security coordination with the Palestinian Authority and Jordan, Israel is living in its “most convenient security ever,” added Gilad.
The following are Gilad’s key quotes during The Israel Project’s one-day briefing on the Palestinian U.N. recognition bid and its regional implications.
The Jordanians are committed to peace, not only for our interests but for theirs. Peace cannot prevail, however, without peace in Egypt.
It is still the leader of the Arab world. Some may argue about it but from our perspective it is a major pillar and we must do what we can to make peace while keeping security obligations, including preventing smuggling of weapons into Gaza, protecting Sinai and so on. Egypt is a responsible superpower in the Middle East.
Iran is still the main threat. It is determined. It is radical.
Our relations are not at their peak; but violence and threats of course will not be a solution. We hope for peaceful reconciliation.
They are a pillar in our national security and it is worthy to mention them.
We are facing radical entities – and Hezbollah is a radical entity. Hezbollah is creating a radical state within Lebanon by separating the southern parts of the country from the rest of the country. Hezbollah, supported heavily by Shi’ite Iran, has thousands of rockets (at least 45,000). It is a real military entity (as former U.S. secretary of defense Robert Gates has said) possessing missiles and other “surprises” as Secretary General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, calls them. Nasrallah is effectively running military, political and terror commands under one organization.
We call Gaza “Hamastan” because this regime is funded by Iran. Although they are Sunni, Hamas as well as Islamic Jihad are supported and armed by Iran. Hamas now has hundreds of rockets, along with Iranian expertise, aimed at Tel Aviv.
Hamas is part of Egypt’s Muslim brotherhood, whose mission is to take over the Middle East and establish an Islamic empire. It is good to remember who they are.
It seems that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad will stay in power even if it means slaughtering his own people. Assad, who has no intentions of stepping down, is supported by his army (for the time being). The Alawites, a minority of about 2 million in Syria, struck deals with other groups for the economy and security – but now the incentives for them may be gone.