Beyond Countering Iran: A Political Economy of Azerbaijan-Israel Relations


Goksel O.

BRITISH JOURNAL OF MIDDLE EASTERN STUDIES, vol.42, no.4, pp.655-675, 2015 (Journal Indexed in SSCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 42 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/13530194.2015.1048973
  • Title of Journal : BRITISH JOURNAL OF MIDDLE EASTERN STUDIES
  • Page Numbers: pp.655-675

Abstract

In recent years, Azerbaijan-Israel relations have come to the foreground of politics in the Middle East and Caucasus region. Ties between Baku and Tel Aviv have been directly interlinked with their relations with Iran. The nature of the Azerbaijan-Israel partnership must be analysed in order to comprehend the balance of powers and energy security in the region. Even though there have been a number of works analysing the relationship by focusing on its role in regional military security, there is a gap in the discourse in terms of understanding the economic drivers of relations and the implications of the ties for regional energy security. Particular attention will be given to discussing Azerbaijan's emerging role as a major energy producer that has already made a profound impact on the region as an 'alternative' to Iran in the aftermath of the recently imposed sanctions on Tehran's energy exports. It will be argued that the Azerbaijan-Israel relationship is built on solid economic grounds and it would be reasonable to expect the strength of the ties to be further intensified in the future. The article will also demonstrate that new developments in the energy security of the wider Middle Eastern region will affect the evolution of Azerbaijan-Israel ties and their rivalry with Iran in the next decade.