What have been Iran’s reactions to Israel political chaos? - analysis

The chaos emerging in Israel over the last few days due to the judicial reforms and the decision by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to dismiss the Defense Minister has been keenly observed from Tehran. Evidence for this is Iran’s own pro-regime media reporting.

Iran is intensely interested in what might happen in Israel and taking advantage of this unique opportunity. However, the regime, which faced its own protests over the last seven months, is also skeptical of what might come next.

Tasnim News, which is considered close to the IRGC, profiled Netanyahu’s current policies on Monday. It assumes that Netanyahu will move to “suppress” dissent, especially among reservists. It terms the current chaos as a “crisis” that creates a “gap” in Israel. This gap apparently is one that Iran would like to fill with its own chaos by exporting threats to the West Bank and taking advantage of Israel’s internal problems to continue its entrenchment in Syria and its support for Hezbollah.

AL-Mayadeen news, which is considered sympathetic to Iran, also has written extensively on Israel’s political division, including the comments by Yoav Gallant, who is now the former Defense Minister after being fired on Sunday. The overall context of the reports is to present the current updates on what is happening in Israel without a lot of commentaries on Monday.

This is a “want and see” approach. Iran’s regime and its allies in the region, such as Hezbollah, have often toed the IRGC line that Israel is always about to implode and fall apart. Iran knows it can’t confront Israel militarily, so it expects that the only way to defeat Israel is to hope some kind of internal chaos or Deus ex machina will lead Israel to defeat internally. Apart from commentary such as “Israel is eroding” that appears in pro-Iranian media, the regime in Tehran is waiting to see what happens next.

Police attempt to push back protesters on Ayalon Highway during judicial reform protests, March 1, 2023. (credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/ MAARIV)

General region is interested in the judicial reform protests

The region in general is interested in the protests in Israel. Gulf media has reported widely on them. Some on social media have even linked the mass protests in Israel to the Arab Spring protests that began in Tunisia and spread to Egypt in 2011. Considering the fact that those protests were widely seen as bringing chaos, and that subsequently Tunisia and Egypt have turned away from the era of protests to a new era of more authoritarian governance, one could conclude that those watching Israel in the region will merely think that Israel is following that model.

Israel largely weathered the chaos that has overshadowed the region in the last decade. This means Israel was seen as a strong, dynamic and more cohesive country in the region in the recent decade, and that strength was one that Netanyahu mentioned in his characterization of his policies.

This shift from projecting strength to tipping into political chaos is an issue of immense concern in the region. The Gulf states and others linked to the Abraham Accords and various initiatives such as the Negev Forum and I2U2 will want to know that Israel will continue the trends of economic advances and dynamic contribution to innovation which underpinned Israel’s success in the last decades. Israel’s partners in the region will want to know that security arrangements and partnerships continue as planned.

For Israel’s adversaries, such as Iran, there is a current view that they will wait and see what happens while expecting to exploit Israel’s domestic focus for their own ends. They have done this before, such as when Iran used Ramadan tensions over Sheikh Jarrah to help spark a war in Gaza back in May 2021. That war also took place amid the context of numerous elections in Israel.

Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info).

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