Iran can gain politically by de-escalating

Al Jazeera Analysis April 15, 2024:

(Scroll down that page 2/3).
Dr. Stephen Zunes, a professor of politics and international studies at the University of San Francisco, said the US is trying to “calm things” in the Middle East following Iran’s retaliatory attacks against Israel.
While the US has “allowed Israel to engage in some pretty horrific war crimes against the Palestinians”, expanding to an international conflict of this magnitude, especially against a relatively powerful opponent like Iran is something the US will try and prevent, he said.
For the Israelis, however, there are more “hawkish elements” at play, he said. This includes Netanyahu looking to have the international community focus on Israel versus Iran, where he can garner more sympathy compared with Israel versus the Palestinians.
The Iranian regime, at this point, can gain politically by not escalating, Zunes added.
Israel’s actions in the war on Gaza, with US support, have alienated many non-Western nations and made them less likely to normalize relations with Israel, he said.”

Israel’s War on Gaza: 3 TV & Radio interviews October-December 2023

Israel’s War on Gaza: 11 Zunes’ articles published Oct. 7-Dec. 31, 2023

Political Costs of Biden’s Support for Israel’s War Mount [Source]
U.S. Attacks on the ICJ are a Declaration of Empire [Source]
Biden’s Gaza Failure Could Cost Democrats 2024 Election [Source]
Applying International Law to Israel’s War and Hamas’ Attack [Video & Transcript]
Scholars Weigh in on Gaza-Israel Conflict Counterpunch interview of Professors Zunes and international legal scholar Richard Falk [Princeton] on Israel, Gaza, and U.S. policy, 10/13/2023 [Source]
How U.S. Policy Failures Have Helped Hamas [Source]
Hamas, Israel and the U.S. Have Learned Nothing [Source]
Biden’s Backing Israel War Crimes Carries on Sordid U.S. Tradition [Source]
O Globo, Brazil’s largest newspaper, on Israel’s war on Gaza (English translation and original Portuguese transcript) [Source]
Dr. Zunes is quoted in this Al-Jazeera article: Why are US Republicans pushing for aid to Israel but not Ukraine? [Source]

More Articles and interviews on the Gaza Crisis

Trump’s Middle East Policy: The Ironies of Hawkishness

Al Jazeera Report March 8, 2024:
Donald Trump ran for president declaring that he would take a more cautious and less-interventionist approach to the Middle East, take a more even-handed approach to Israel and Palestine, and avoid being tied down in endless wars. As an outsider with few ties to the foreign policy establishment, some hoped he might bring a more pragmatic and enlightened approach to U.S. policy in the region. However, once in office, Trump has pursued reckless and militaristic policies, deepening U.S. military involvement, backing the Israeli colonization and annexation of the occupied Palestinian territories, deepening ties to Arab autocrats, and threatening war with Iran. His appointees have tended to be those who are guided more by ideological prejudices than knowledge of the Middle East, resulting in growing concerns not only by traditional progressive critics of U.S. foreign policy, but by many in the security and intelligence establishment as well. The extreme nature of these policies, however, may be providing an opportunity for a serious re-evaluation of U.S. Middle East policy as a whole, which may make possible positive changes in U.S. policy in the longer run. The dangers from Trump administration policies in the meantime, however, are quite serious, and risk provoking even more violence and instability. [source]

The problem with leftist support for Syria’s Assad regime & How Syria Divides the Left: An Interview With Middle East Scholar Stephen Zunes

Despite his country being in the throes of one of the worst wars of our time, Syrian President Bashar Al Assad unveiled a statue of his late father, Hafez Assad, in Hama, one of the birthplaces of the rebellion against his rule. There is currently a tenuous ceasefire in place between Assad and the rebel groups he is fighting. According to Al Jazeera Assad has made an offer to swap prisoners with the rebels as a gesture of goodwill. [This item’s no longer available.]

Truthout July 10, 2017Interviewed Dr. Zunes
SZ: “Most credible academics and journalists on the left, while varying to some degree in their analyses, generally agree that the Syrian regime is horrifically repressive and not particularly progressive by any measure.    There is also a consensus that the bulk of the armed opposition is dominated by reactionary Salafist extremists and that the largely nonviolent movement that first emerged in 2011 had strong progressive and democratic elements, but has largely been crushed. Further, the United States and other outside powers (Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, Russia, Iran, Hezbollah, Britain, France, etc.) should not be bombing, sending arms, providing troops or contributing to the carnage in any way….”