About our next speaker, Azriel Bermant
Dr. Azriel Bermant is an historian and lecturer in International Relations at Tel Aviv University and at the Rothberg International School, Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is the author of Margaret Thatcher and the Middle East (2016, Cambridge University Press).
Bermant was a Research Fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) at Tel Aviv University between 2012 and 2015. He was awarded his PhD from University College London; and also writes on international affairs for various publications, including The Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, Foreign Affairs, The Jewish Chronicle and Haaretz. He is a fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and one of the sons of the late JC columnist and author, Chaim Bermant.
He will speak about Britain and Zionism: Balfour to Thatcher when back in Israel later in February.
Margaret Thatcher and the Middle East examines Thatcher’s policy on the Middle East, with a spotlight on her approach towards the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It questions claims that she sought to counter the Foreign Office Middle East policy, and maintains that the prime minister was actually in close agreement with the Whitehall bureaucracy on the Arab-Israeli conflict.
In particular, the volume argues that Thatcher’s concerns over Soviet ambitions in the Middle East encouraged her to oppose the policies of Israel’s Likud governments, and to work actively for an urgent resolution of the conflict.
Furthermore, while Thatcher was strongly pro-American, this was not translated into automatic support for Israel. Indeed, the Thatcher government was very much at odds with the Reagan administration over the Middle East, as a result of Washington’s neglect of the forces of moderation in the region.