The book analyzes Israel's strategic thinking about the Middle East region, evaluating its success or failure in maintaining both Israel's security and the viability of Israeli-American strategic cooperation. It looks at the importance of the periphery strategy for Israeli, moderate Arab, American, and European efforts to advance the Arab-Israel peace process, and its potential role as the Arab Spring brings about greater Islamization of the Arab Middle East. Already, Israeli strategic planners are talking of spheres of containment and crescents wherein countries like Cyprus, Greece, Azerbaijan, and Ethiopia constitute a kind of new periphery. By looking at Israel's search for Middle East allies then and w, the book explores a key component of Israel's strategic behavior.
Yossi Alpher was an officer in Israeli military intelligence, followed by twelve years of service in the Mossad. Until 1995, he was director of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University. In July 2000, he served as Special Adviser to the Prime Minister of Israel during the Camp David talks. From 2001 to 2012 he was coeditor of the bitterlemons.net family of internet publications.