Israeli Minister Recognizes Israel's Secret Ties With 'Many' Arab States

Israeli Minister Recognizes Israel's Secret Ties With 'Many' Arab States

Kerry Wise
November 20, 2017

"Iran has launched 60 ballistic missiles on Saudi Arabia, violating the Security Council resolutions on the non-arming of militias", he added.

It is the latest dramatic twist in weeks of turmoil in the region, which followed an unexpected purge of Saudi princes and officials by crown prince Mohammad bin Salman, who has also increasingly locked Saudi Arabia on a path to confrontation with Iran.

"We have connections that are partially secretive with many Muslim and Arab countries", Steinitz added.

Increased tension between Tehran and Riyadh has fueled speculation that shared interests may push Saudi Arabia and Israel to work together against what they see as a common Iranian threat.

"We are ready to exchange experiences with moderate Arab countries and exchange intelligence to confront Iran".

"There are many shared interests between us and Saudi Arabia", Eizenkot added.

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Gadi Eisenkot gave a rare interview with the London-based Saudi-owned newspaper Elaph. It is significant for its intended symbolism, created to show off a warmer relationship with Riyadh in public, not least the emerging US-backed axis against Iran.

Last week Saudi Arabia ordered its citizens to leave Lebanon immediately, escalating a regional standoff with Iran centred on the fragile state, which it claims is being run by Tehran's proxy, Hezbollah.

"The Iranian plan is to control the Middle East by means of two Shi'ite crescents", Eisenkot told Elaph, "the first being from Iran through Iraq to Syria and Lebanon and the second across the Gulf from Bahrain to Yemen to the Red Sea".

He said U.S. President Donald Trump's election on a platform that calls for increasing pressure on Iran has provided an opportunity for new alliances in the Middle East. We respect the will of the other side: when connections develop, whether it is with Saudi Arabia or other countries...

An Israeli cabinet minister said on Sunday that Israel has had covert contacts with Saudi Arabia amid common concerns over Iran, a first disclosure by a senior Israeli official of such contacts. "However we will not accept a strategic threat to Israel".