Putin-Netanyahu talks to focus on rising Islamist power:
The Muslim Brotherhood’s rise to power in Egypt – and soon, possibly,
in Syria – will have pushed to the sidelines such obvious topics as
Iran and gas when Monday, June 25, Russian President Vladimir Putin on
a short visit to Israel meets Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
On this subject at least, the Russian and Israeli leaders will find
common ground: Both are concerned, to put it mildly, by the chain of
Muslim Brotherhood governments rolling out along Middle East shores –
Libya, last year; Egypt, yesterday; and Syria, tomorrow. In their
view, this process is a menace to regional stability which rivals even
that of a nuclear-armed Iran.
Putin counts US President Barack Obama’s sponsorship of Muslim
Brotherhood power as a strategic threat to Russian national security
because of it could be the match which lights the flame of radical
Islam in the Caucasus and among the Russian Muslim populations of the
Volga River valleys.
As for Netanyahu, his calm-sounding congratulations for the new,
democratically-elected Egyptian president, disguise trepidation. After
one domino fell in Cairo, he fears another will fall in Damascus
leaving Jordan vulnerable to having its king pushed over by the
kingdom’s powerful Muslim Brotherhood.
Israel would then be under siege from three Islamist-ruled neighbors -
“moderate” in Obama’s eyes, alarmingly “extremist and expansionist” in
the view of Putin and Netanyahu.
In contrast to the Israeli prime minister, the Russian president makes
no bones about his utter disapproval of the US President’s
“pro-Islamic” policies. His blunt words in support of Syria’s Bashar
Assad at the G20 in Mexico Sunday, June 18, were meant as a monkey
wrench for US plans to continue to install Muslim power in Arab lands.
Not surprisingly, their conversation on the summit sidelines was
described as “candid” – a euphemism for “difficult” – and must have
raised a stop sign against the “reset” of ties heralded last year by
The Israeli Prime Minister keeps on smiling to Obama while grinding
his teeth over the security avalanche set in motion at Israel’s front
and back doors and wracking his brains for a plan of cooperation with
Moscow to arrest the slide.