Monday, October 1, 2012

Azerbaijan To Israel's Defense

Political Alliances

It has often been said that politics of necessity lead to odd alliances, at least publicly. An article in Reuters and published in the The Jerusalem Post says that Israel might have found at least one ally from an unexpected source, Azerbaijan:
Azerbaijan, the oil-rich ex-Soviet republic on Iran's far northern border, has, say local sources with knowledge of its military policy, explored with Israel how Azeri air bases and spy drones might help Israeli jets pull off a long-range attack.
That is a far cry from the massive firepower and diplomatic cover that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu wants from Washington. But, by addressing key weaknesses in any Israeli war plan - notably on refueling, reconnaissance and rescuing crews - such an alliance might tilt Israeli thinking on the feasibility of acting without US help.
Despite official denials by Azerbaijan and Israel, two Azeri former military officers with links to serving personnel and two Russian intelligence sources all told Reuters that Azerbaijan and Israel have been looking at how Azeri bases and intelligence could serve in a possible strike on Iran.
"Where planes would fly from - from here, from there, to where? - that's what's being planned now," a security consultant with contacts at Azeri defense headquarters in Baku said. "The Israelis...would like to gain access to bases in Azerbaijan."
Such a political move shows that despite the risks to it, Azerbaijan considers a nuclear Iran to be a greater risk. If this holds true, it would give Israel some more diplomatic leverage against Iran and its nuclear program. It might also encourage other nations to line up with Israel.

You can read the rest of the article at [The Jerusalem Post]

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