India, Israel And The Arab States


The president of US Donald Trump is of course too much meant to be busy for the November 2020 elections, and despite the stand-off with China on many fronts, particularly in South China Sea, will not be able to ‘look-that-hard’ into with China until the elections are over, which is not ‘that much’ to India’s liking, yet Israel, which is actually ‘US in Action’ has stood with India, for much to its ideology, by supplying all ‘intelligence-drones’ weapons etc, has now finally jumped into the India-China muddle as The Hindu 1  reported ‘Israel hopes India-China tensions will ease soon, Israel hopes that tensions between India and China will ease and it is in talks with both countries on trade agreements, according to an Israeli official’. It has been learnt that Gilad Cohen, the deputy director of the Asia-Pacific Division of Israeli Foreign Ministry is talking to the Indian government about trilateral cooperation in areas such as — agriculture, technology and water. “The combination of the three countries can be for the benefit of all three sides.” he said. With Israel and the United Arab Emirates set to sign the historic deal to normalise relations at a White House ceremony on September 15, Israeli officials in Tel Aviv have proposed trilateral cooperation among Israel, UAE and India. On the question on the recent border tensions between India and China, Gilhad Cohen said, “We have very good relations with India. We have good relations with China… We try to have good relations with all of Asia.” “We hope tensions will be sorted out in peaceful ways and tension will reduce, this is what we desire”’ was reported in IndiaToday on September 10, 2020 2 . But, at the same tine ,  to give a setback to China, Israel and US had begun to collaborate with India into developing the next generation of emerging technologies as was reported in  ZeenewsIndia on September 8, 2020 3 .

If events could be analysed then on September 9, 2020 Pakistan army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa took the 235th  Core Commanders meeting 4  , and it gave a clear message that China and Pakistan are in alignment against India, and in its wake, this message from Israel has arrived, and immediately it came to light that PM Modi has had a telephonic talk with King Salman of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on September 9, 2020 in which the two leaders exchanged views of global challenges following COVID-19 5. Modi is said to have expressed his appreciation to KSA for the leadership during its on-going presidency of G20 grouping along with ‘special thanks’ provided to Indian expatriates during the pandemic. The statement issued was typically aligned on the sarkari lines, but what mattered was just yet to arrive.

King Salman of KSA just thereafter dialed to China president Xi Jinping. The Chinese news agency CGTN informed on September 9, 2020, that Chinese president had talks with Uruguayan president on initiatives during COVID-19 and China’s Belt and Road Initiative. The report contained eight small paragraphs, and in its last paragraph it referred to King Salman calling up Jinping 6. This quick chain of events does show as to how shaky the Indian situation is as  ‘Bajwa meeting, Israel calling, Modi dialing, King Salman talking and China listening’ is happening in such a quick succession, is a proof enough that something big is on the cards.  This situation was inevitable in its consequences as it was quite warranted, particularly, after the horrendous meeting of India’s defense minister Rajnath Singh with Chinese counterpart Wei Fenghe had ended in a deadlock, towards which I had written an article in CounterCurrents ‘Is War Imminent’ on September 6, 2020 7 .  On September 8, 2020, I wrote another article in CounterCurrents  ‘For Iran China is In. India Not’, which is a thread to what all was coming. ‘Any positive-report from Indian aspect was being awaited but which did not arrive. This leaves Rajnath Singh (read India) to maneuver-out from inside the Gulf-states a standpoint against Pakistan which is raring to go against India alongside China.  Hence, the great-game is now entering into its next phase as a ‘threat’ to Pakistan from Gulf-states, to the advantage of India, might be on the anvil, but winds of change are also blowing as China has started to discard oil-import from Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which has slipped to the third position in terms of crude oil supply to china’ 8 . And, exactly the same has taken place. KSA has been put into order to help India out of the morass of China-Pakistan cauldron.

What is interesting is to note than King Salman did not call Pakistan but instead  to China and China gave it a last paragraph for its details!   Now Indian external affairs minister S Jaishankar is on his visit to Moscow to meet Russian and Chinese counterparts to anyhow try to defuse the situation building-up with China, now in Arunachal Pradesh too, apart from what has happened in Ladakh. But, skeptics feel that when Rajnath Singh could not ‘tame-the-tide’ to India’s advantage how would Jaishankar do it?   Perhaps, India’s only last recourse is to seek Russian solidarity as its final shield against China. I wrote a detailed article on the same lines in CounterCurrents ‘India not able to fully abandon Russia’ on September 2, 2020 9 . Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi is also in Moscow,

World politics in the recent months has perhaps spiraled more around Israel, US, China, Pakistan, UAE etc and it hasn’t been very late when Israel had shunted out China and shelved its contracts when US secretary of state Mike Pompeo visited Israel on May 16, 2020 10 and had warned against Chinese investments in Israel. Thus, it is more than clear that Israel cannot be ‘as friendly’ with China as it is with India, and this latest and the first-of-its-kind statement by Israel is by all standards a support to India, as India had very much expected US president Donald Trump to join-its-war-rhetoric with China but US did not hit the radar! Now, India is putting-into-use its offices in Israel, which are now very cordial with KSA and UAE, particularly after the normalisation of ties between UAE-Israel on August 14, 2020 11 ,  to make KSA and UAE put pressure on Pakistan to abstain from entering the ‘war-arena’ between China and India.

But, isn’t it a fact that India is trying for something into a ‘dead-end’ as KSA has already tried-in-vain to browbeat Pakistan in recent times and it could not yield ‘the-desired-result’ to its maneuvering . A long-standing article by Ali Awadh Asseri , former KSA  diplomat  to Pakistan, in ArabNews 12 on August 17, 2020, on the eve of Pakistan army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa visit to Riyadh, after Shah Mehmood Qureshi diatribe against KSA for doing ‘precious-little’ for Kashmir inside the 58 nation member Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC), is so full of threats to Pakistan, to make it succumb to KSA tactics but Pakistan did not budge.  In the same contexts I wrote two articles in CounterCurrents ‘Israel Threatens Pakistan and Saudi Arabia Ditches Pakistan on Kashmir’ on August 12, 2020  13 and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Humiliates Pakistan on August 25, 2020 14 . But, KSA prevailing-over Pakistan seem to be some wishful-thinking as now much waters has flown down the Thames, since the ‘situations’ were made to take to the ugly turns.

If Pakistan had budged to KSA pressure then Qureshi must have long been given ‘marching-orders’ but Qureshi is very much in the middle-of-affairs, and his presence resuscitates the policy of Pakistan establishment he reflected.  PM Modi, might have again be caught on a wrong foot by scheduling KSA ‘into’ for the purpose.  It is hence, in all likelihood that India’s Rajnath Singh and Jayshankar would be hopping to Riyadh in near future , to fill into the vacuum, to be created, by the absence of Pakistan expatriates as very soon they are to be dispatched-off. Pakistan, it does seem to have gone ahead to tie its future with a new emerging bloc i.e. Turkey, Iran, Malaysia and China with Russia support. The biggest scourge for India is Pakistan’s growing proximity with Russia which is to the doing-of-China 15.

India is now all out into giving a message to Gulf-states, as The Hindu BusinessLine informs on September 8, 2020 that ‘For Gulf-States China is a temporary friend’ 16, meaning thereby, that China is now to be advised by Pakistan vis-à-vis Gulf-states, therefore, India is now ready to replace Pakistan inside the Gulf-states, and that the real friends from  now onwards are to be India, Israel and US for the Arab-states.  UAE and India have already started to take-off their relationship to the next level  as UAE ambassador to India has expressed that UAE and India need to have an open-sky policy instead of a mere airspace agreement 17 , hence, Modi might have this time fired the wrong salvo as Pakistan, has given a clear proof, that it no more tends to be cowed by KSA.  India is now a natural ally of KSA as Iran and China too have entered into a historic deal of 400 billion USD of ‘trade and military partnership’ for the next 25 years 18.  Meanwhile UAE-Israel companionship has started to reach to next-levels as hotels in UAE have been told to cater to Jewish Kosher food reports The Jerusalem Post 19  and Arab League  has also refused to condemn the UAE-Israel embassy move on the demand from Palestine reports Al Jazeera on September 10, 2020.

As for the Indian side, let’s see if Jayshankar is able to break some juggernaut in Moscow.

The writer is a former Uttar Pradesh State Information Commissioner. He writes on international politics.  




















19- Abu Dhabi tells hotels to provide kosher meals following UAE-Israel deal





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