Shlomo Avineri

For Shlomo Avineri's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Apr 30, 2012

Is it an Arab spring for new borders?

Two things stand out in the Middle East since the Arab Spring began — one that happened, and one that did not. What happened was that for the first time in modern Arab history, authoritarian regimes and rulers were toppled, or seriously challenged, by ...

Oct 28, 2011

Neighbors warily eye a more muscular Turkey

The recent surge in Turkey’s military actions against the Kurds in northern Iraq is an indication that, somewhat surprisingly — but not entirely unpredictably — Turkish foreign policy has undergone a 180-degree turn in less than two years. The Turkish offensive is also an ...

May 12, 2011

The long road to Arab democracy

During the turmoil of the French Revolution, a popular saying arose: “How beautiful was the republic — under the monarchy.” The revolution aimed at achieving liberty, equality and fraternity. Instead, it wrought for France Jacobin terror, rightwing counterterror, decades of war and then Napoleonic ...

Jul 9, 2010

Actions belie Turkey's 'zero conflict' policy

JERUSALEM — A few months before he became Turkey’s foreign minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s chief adviser, met with a group of Middle Eastern academics and policy experts, including Arabs and Israelis. With his academic background and immense erudition, he ...

Jun 13, 2010

Palestinians preparing for 'independence'

JERUSALEM — Although the crisis over Israel’s naval interventions to defend its blockade of Gaza is gaining all the headlines around the world, something of far more historic importance is taking place in the Middle East. The Palestine National Authority is preparing to issue ...

May 25, 2008

Recognizing the limits of American influence

JERUSALEM — Israel’s 60th anniversary has come and gone. So, too, has President George W. Bush’s final visit to the Middle East. Amid the celebrations and the soul-searching, no meaningful breakthrough in the deadlocked Israeli-Palestinian negotiations is visible. There are immediate reasons why this ...

Jul 19, 2007

Palestinians still paying for past failures

PRAGUE — Every week, it seems, brings another backward step for Palestine. President Mahmoud Abbas’ failure to convene the Palestinian Legislative Assembly, due to a Hamas boycott, may lead inexorably to the final breakdown of the political structures created under the Oslo Accords. Sadly, ...

May 4, 2007

Will Ehud Olmert survive?

JERUSALEM — After Israel’s inability last summer to achieve a conclusive victory over Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, public pressure forced Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s government to appoint a commission to examine the causes of this surprising failure. How could a small militia, numbering less ...