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Iran is protecting itself through restraint in Israel-Hamas war, says Kim Ghattas
Iran is protecting itself through restraint in Israel-Hamas war, says Kim Ghattas | GZERO World

Iran is protecting itself through restraint in Israel-Hamas war, says Kim Ghattas

Will Iran use Hezbollah fighters to help Hamas in Gaza?

On GZERO World, Ian Bremmer spoke with Beirut-based journalist Kim Ghattas about the rising tensions on Israel’s northern border with Lebanon, as Israeli Defense Forces and Hezbollah fighters exchange daily rocket fire and thousands of people on both sides flee their homes. Like Hamas, Hezbollah has an eradicationist ideology that calls for the destruction of the state of Israel, a position that could be untenable if the border clashes continue to escalate. Hezbollah is Iran’s most powerful proxy, but Ghattas doesn’t think it’s in Tehran’s interest to use the militant group to further Hamas’s goals.

“For 44 years Iran has claimed that is a supporter of the Palestinian people,” Ghattas explains, “I think Iran has come to realize that its use of the Palestinian cause has bumped up against the limits of what’s possible.”

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Will Israel's mistakes with Hezbollah be repeated with Hamas?
Will Israel's mistakes with Hezbollah be repeated with Hamas? | Kim Ghattas | GZERO World

Will Israel's mistakes with Hezbollah be repeated with Hamas?

Is Israel doomed to repeat the mistakes from its Lebanon invasion in Gaza?

For Lebanese people, it’s difficult not to see the current war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza through the lens of Israeli occupation. On GZERO World with Ian Bremmer, Beirut-based journalist Kim Ghattas explains why the history of Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon is incredibly relevant today: it led to a two-month siege where the city was cut off from food, water and fuel and killed 17,000 people. Now, a similar situation is playing out in Gaza and Israel is at risk of repeating the mistakes of the past. Ghattas reminds Bremmer that despite the thousands of civilian casualties, Israel failed to accomplish its strategic goals during the Lebanon invasion and is at risk of the same in Gaza.

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A giant screen in a Beijing mall broadcasts news footage of a Chinese fighter jet flying near Taiwan.

REUTERS/Tingshu Wang

What We're Watching: Chinese drills off Taiwan, Israeli-Palestinian violence, US abortion pills legal drama

China simulates Taiwan invasion

China "welcomed" Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen back from her Americas trip and meeting with US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy by putting on its biggest show of military force near the self-ruled island since McCarthy's predecessor, Nancy Pelosi, visited Taiwan in Aug. 2022.

As part of three days of drills dubbed "Joint Sword" by Beijing, Chinese forces rehearsed an invasion of Taiwan, which split from the mainland in 1949 and China considers a renegade province. The so-called "combat readiness" exercises sent dozens of warships and fighter jets around the island, with many aircraft symbolically crossing the demarcation line in the middle of the Taiwan Strait. Chinese military planners also released an animated video of the simulated strikes with the capital, Taipei, exploding in flames, and the drills concluded Monday with a dry run of an aerial and naval blockade.

On the one hand, China's simulation is a clear message to Taiwan and the US: We’re not messing around so don’t test our resolve. But on the other, the scale and scope of the drills fall short of China's fiery response to Pelosi's trip, which might indicate that Beijing doesn't want to be the one to escalate.

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British pound coins are seen in front of displayed stock graph.

Reuters

What We’re Watching: Bank of England intervenes, Pyongyang provocations, Israel-Lebanon gas deal

Bank of England to the rescue?

The Bank of England stepped in Wednesday to try and calm markets that had gone haywire after the Conservative British government, led by new PM Liz Truss, introduced £45 billion ($49 billion) worth of tax cuts despite sky-high inflation. The bank will fork out £65 billion ($70 billion) to buy government bonds “at an urgent pace” to try to revive investor confidence and boost the pound, which recently fell to a record low against the US dollar. This development comes after the International Monetary Fund issued an unusual rebuke this week of British fiscal policy, warning that the tax cuts would exacerbate inequality. There are also concerns that some pension funds, which invest in government bonds, could be made insolvent following the collapse of UK government bond prices in recent weeks. Though the bank’s intervention is significant, there’s no indication that the Truss government is willing to reverse course (i.e. limit borrowing) to regain market trust. Meanwhile, in a keynote speech Wednesday, Labour leader Keir Starmer said Tories had “crashed the pound,” noting that “this is a Labour moment.” Indeed, Labour is currently trouncing the Conservatives in the polls, but Starmer would need to maintain this momentum until the next general election, which must be held by January 2025.

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