Written by Chris Mitchell

JERUSALEM, Israel — Against the backdrop of a pending deal over Iran’s nuclear program, an unprecedented meeting took place in Washington, D.C., last week.

The meeting between Israel and Saudi Arabia sent one more signal of an historic geopolitical change taking place in the Middle East.

At the Council on Foreign Relations, Israel’s incoming director general of the Foreign Ministry Dore Gold met with Anwar Majed Eshki, his Saudi counterpart.

These historic enemies shared an identical message: Iran is trying to take over the Middle East and it must be stopped.

The meeting took place in public, but Israel and Saudi Arabia revealed they have met five other times behind closed doors. That revelation and the rare public meeting seemed designed to send a clear signal to President Barack Obama’s White House.

“The Saudi message is basically, ‘President Obama, listen to Prime Minister Netanyahu,’ former Israeli Ambassador Yoram Ettinger told CBN News. “The Saudis identify fully with Israeli perception of the Iranian threat. They totally disagree with the very naïve misrepresentation of Iran by President Obama.”

Iranian television even covered the event and the timing of the meeting seemed planned. It fell in the shadow of the June 30 deadline for the nuclear talks in Lausanne, Switzerland, between Iran, the United States and five other world powers.

“In fact, the Saudis and the Israelis are very, very concerned about President Obama’s being pre-occupied with Lausanne, which conflicts dramatically with the reality in the Persian Gulf,” Ettinger continued. “In fact, the Iranians are trying to topple every single pro-American Arab regime.”

Ettinger said the threat Iran poses explains the change in relations.

“As far as the Saudis are concerned, the Israelis constitute the most effective life insurance they have right now in the face of Iran,” he explained.

While Saudi Arabia — a major Sunni power — and Israel have been enemies for decades, they both see Shiite Iran’s nuclear program as a threat to their very existence.

Huge differences remain between these two historic foes, but for now their alliance seems a classic example of the Middle East maxim, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”


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