Israel and the Emerging Strategic Architecture in the Middle East

Dr. Joshua Krasna from MDC and Hadar Lasry point to Israel’s changing perception of itself as an integral part of its region, not a “villa in the jungle” separate from it, and its increasing appetite for issue-specific alliances and collective security arrangements. This article is part of a special issue of "Orbis: A Journal of World Affairs", published by MDC's Hiwar Forum, with support from the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung Israel office.


"The Middle East has undergone significant changes in the past two decades. Most significantly, the region has experienced the dissolution of the post-1991 America-centric regional security complex as the United States reduces its forces and retools its center of effort toward the Indo-Pacific, and the creation of a new gas-centered sub-regional security complex in the Eastern Mediterranean. These changes have impacted Israel’s stature in its region and have led to significant changes in Israel’s foreign and national security policy. While in the past, Israel viewed itself as a "villa in the jungle"—not as an integral part of the region—it now sees itself as part of its surroundings and is pursuing a much more regional-centric policy. This change is clear in issue-specific alliances and collective security arrangements, as well as in long-range economic relationships. This article analyzes the regional changes and their impact in Israeli strategic thinking and policy."