The Russian-Israeli partnership is crucial, given the perils and unpredictability of today's regional tensions. Their shared interests champion security and other geopolitical issues, and underscore deep-seated historical ties that bind the countries.
Clearly there is a correlation between Middle East tensions and high oil prices. Are we seeing a replay of Russian policies that solidified Iranian intransigence on matters nuclear, thereby exacerbating those tensions to bring about significantly higher oil prices?
The Gabala Radar Station is a symbolic yet pivotal actor in the missile defense question that has preoccupied the U.S. and Russian for some years. Its fate symbolizes Russia's new President's attitude toward the former Soviet satellites.
As Putin watched the U.S plunge into two wars in the Middle East, he saw a power vacuum in his neighborhood. He was playing old-fashioned power politics while his "friend" Bush was trying to remake Arabia.