Israelis may justify their relationship with Azerbaijan in realpolitik consideration: In its crudest terms, it is a relationship based on a weapons-for-energy calculation. Jerusalem sold Baku billions of dollars’ worth of top-shelf military equipment, and Israel received almost half of its oil needs from Azerbaijan. The long-term detriment to ties may soon surpass any short-term gains, however.
by Michael Rubin,
Here, Israeli officials’ misreading of the regional dynamics creates a self-fulfilling prophecy: By embracing Azerbaijan and Turkey but remaining silent on those two countries’ blockade of Armenia,
The final aspect of Israel’s short-sightedness involves the more than 7,700 Arab or Turkmen mercenaries transported into Azerbaijan from Syria by Turkey in order to wage religious jihad against Christians. The identities of these mercenaries are increasingly known: Many come from Syria and some previously fought for Al Qaeda-linked groups or the Islamic State. Israelis may depict Azerbaijan as secular and respectful of freedom of religion but, for President Ilham Aliyev to embrace militiamen who destroy churches, behead prisoners, and engage in anti-Christian polemic as they cut off ears and gauge out eyes of captured prisoners, suggests the opposite. At the very least, Azerbaijan’s embrace of Islamist mercenaries might not only destabilize the country in the long run, but it could also make Israel more vulnerable. Simply put, there is no such thing as a good terrorist and by turning a blind eye toward Aliyev’s most recent actions, Israel is undercutting its own war on terror: how can it complain that Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip are beyond the pale when Jerusalem simultaneously albeit indirectly cooperates with such mercenaries against Armenia?
Read full: https://nationalinterest.org/feature/israel%E2%80%99s-azerbaijan-mistake-173476