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Israel should back Assad

Based on past experience and years of calm borders with Syria, Israel must abandon whatever ties it develops with Syrian rebels and work with its Western allies to stabilize President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
An Israeli soldier rides a tank on the Israeli side of the border fence between Syria and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, near Majdal Shams, June 16, 2015. Israel's president expressed his concern to the United States last week about the fate of the Druze minority in Syria, saying around 500,000 of them were under threat from Islamist militants in an area near the Israeli border. REUTERS/Baz Ratner  - RTX1GRYM

On June 23, Druze residents attacked two injured Syrian rebels who were transferred by an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) ambulance from the border to an Israeli hospital. This lynching in the Druze Majdal Shams village in the Golan Heights is a warning bell not just for Israel, but for all the players in the region. The Druze problem has brought to the surface, at least implicitly, the network of inter-ethnic hostilities and tensions on Israel’s border. If the regime in Damascus collapses or abandons this border region to the goodwill of Sunni factions, we can safely assume that the relative stability and quiet there will end as well. The pent-up tension in the border region would explode.

What Israel should learn from these events is that it must strive for the survival and bolstering of the current regime at any price. Anyone who wonders why is invited to look at neighboring Iraq or distant Libya. What’s happening there is likely to happen in Syria after President Bashar al-Assad.

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