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Israel and Turkey have reconciled, now what?

The renewed Israeli-Turkish relations will not be based, as in the past, on closed security cooperation, but on the convergence of interests and common enemies.

The teams of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan finally agreed today on the details of a bilateral reconciliation agreement. But why didn't this happen three years ago? On March 22, 2013, US President Barack Obama left Israel after a successful three-day visit to Jerusalem and Ramallah. At the time, the United States and Israel were exerting considerable efforts to ensure the visit’s success. It was supposed to mark a turning point, setting Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on a new and better path. It was intended to turn back the four disastrous years that preceded it.

The cherry on top was presumed to be the last few minutes of the visit. After considerable softening by the Americans, Netanyahu was supposed to call Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to apologize for the Mavi Marmara incident, in which Israeli naval commandos killed 10 Turkish citizens, who tried to break through Israel’s blockade of Gaza three years earlier, in May 2010. Obama was set to play the patron of this conversation, which would take place within hearing of a special media trailer installed at Ben Gurion Airport, just moments before Air Force One was scheduled to take off for home.

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