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May 15, 2018

Bahrain Says Israel Has a Right to Self-Defense, and the Media Shrugs

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Bahrain's Foreign Minister and then-U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry


The foreign minister of the Arab nation of Bahrain, Sheikh Khalid al-Khaalifa declared on May 10, 2018 that Israel has a right to defend itself. The remarks, which came after an Iranian-Israeli confrontation in Syria, mark a sharp break with the past, in which Arab countries condemned the Jewish nation’s use of self-defense. Nonetheless, many major U.S. news outlets did not cover the story.

On Twitter, Al-Khalifa proclaimed:” “As long as Iran has breached the status quo in the region and invaded countries with its forces and missiles, any state in the region, including Israel, is entitled to defend itself by destroying sources of danger.”

Multiple U.S. news organizations failed to note al-Khalifa’s comments, including The Washington Post, The New York Times, USA Today, and The Baltimore Sun, among others. Several outlets, however, did note the historical significance of the comments, including The Times of Israel (“Bahrain backs Israeli strikes on Iranian targets in Syria”), The Jerusalem Post (“Bahrain and Israel: Quo Vadis?”), the Algemeiner (“Bahrain: Israel is ‘Entitled to Defend Itself’”)—even the Beirut Daily Star.

As CAMERA has detailed (“Where’s the Coverage? Bahrain Foils Terror Plot,” Jan. 11, 2016), Bahrain has frequently found itself attacked and subverted by the Islamic Republic of Iran, which has sought to manipulate the Gulf nation’s sizable Shi’ite Muslim population. Hezbollah, the Lebanese-based, Iranian-backed terror group, has been involved in several plots to overthrow the Bahraini government. Top regime apparatchiks in Tehran routinely assert that Bahrain belongs to Iran, as the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) has documented (see, for example “Editor Close to Khamenei Says Bahrain Belongs to Iran,” March 11, 2018).

Bahrain is but one of several Arab nations, including, most notably, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which have lessened their antipathy towards Israel in the face of Iranian imperialism and aggression.

Yet, some pundits and reporters are prone to asserting that Israel is increasingly “isolated” or “losing global influence.” However, recent events—even when underreported—prove otherwise.

Posted by SD at May 15, 2018 11:26 AM

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