November 1, 2023 | Flash Brief

Blinken to Visit Israel and Jordan as Iran-Backed Groups Threaten Regional War

November 1, 2023 | Flash Brief

Blinken to Visit Israel and Jordan as Iran-Backed Groups Threaten Regional War

Latest Developments

Secretary of State Antony Blinken is scheduled to visit Israel and Jordan on November 3 as Israeli troops conduct ground operations against Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip. The visit will be his second in the region since the start of the war against Hamas. State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said that Blinken will meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli officials to discuss Israel’s military objectives in the war and how they plan to meet them. Miller said that Blinken plans to reiterate Washington’s support for Israel’s right to defend itself in accordance with international humanitarian law. Blinken will discuss precautions Israel should take to minimize civilian casualties and increase the delivery of humanitarian assistance to civilians in Gaza.

Expert Analysis

“The challenges in front of Blinken are immense. His first job is to deter a regional war. After that, he must help bring the war in Gaza to an acceptable end state that does not allow for Hamas to maintain a stronghold there. Only after that can he begin to address the immense political challenges that will stem from Gaza’s reconstruction and the role of the Palestinian Authority. There is an order of battle here. Blinken must tackle each of these things one at a time.”Jonathan Schanzer, FDD Senior Vice President for Research

“There can be no peace or two-state solution with an Iranian-directed terror organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel and mass murder of Jews. Secretary Blinken can convene a thousand and one round tables on the future of Palestinian statehood and peace processes, but none of it matters if Hamas survives and the Palestinian Authority continues pay-to-slay. That needs to be the message he delivers loud and clear.” Richard Goldberg, FDD Senior Advisor

Threats of Regional War

Blinken’s arrival will coincide with a much-anticipated November 3 speech by Hassan Nasrallah, leader of the Iran-backed terrorist group Hezbollah, which possesses more than 150,000 rockets and missiles capable of striking Israel. Israeli forces and Hezbollah terrorists have clashed along the Israel-Lebanon border in recent weeks but have avoided an escalation into an all-out war.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian met with his Qatari and Turkish counterparts in Turkey on October 31. Abdollahian threatened Israel, saying that if the fighting continues, the “resistance” will conduct another “surprise act.”

Houthis Increase Attacks

Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi rebels on October 31 claimed responsibility for launching missiles and drones toward the Israeli port city of Eilat. Israel’s Arrow missile defense system intercepted the missiles, while fighter jets intercepted the drone.

Jordan, which has had diplomatic ties with Israel since signing a peace treaty in 1994, has been highly critical of the Israeli military response in Gaza. Amman recalled its ambassador to Israel on October 31 and told the Israeli ambassador to Jordan to stay away from Amman.

Nasrallah’s Big Speech,” by Jonathan Schanzer

 “Israel Has Struck More Than 11,000 Terror Targets in Gaza,” FDD Flash Brief

Israel Activates Arrow Defense System Against Houthi Missile Over Red Sea,” FDD Flash Brief


Arab Politics Gulf States Hezbollah Iran Iran Global Threat Network Israel Israel at War Jordan Lebanon Palestinian Politics