In the second Nagorno-Karabakh war in 2020, Azerbaijan achieved a decisive victory over Armenia. Quite surprisingly, Israel was a key player in this conflict, by providing Azerbaijan with extensive support in the form of technology and arms. At first glance, Israel seems like an irrelevant or marginal actor in this ex-territory of the Soviet Union. Yet, its support for Azerbaijan is highly relevant and part of a bigger research puzzle: How can Israel’s involvement in this conflict be explained? The new PRIF report by Eldad Ben Aharon offers an explanation by showing how both geopolitical factors and identity struggle are intertwined. Using the lens of critical geopolitical analysis, the report argues that not only realist factors, but also social constructions of security as well as national and cultural identity play into Israel’s interest in the region.
Eldad Ben Aharon was a Post-Doctoral Minerva Fellow (2020–22) and is currently an Associate Researcher in PRIF’s research department “Glocal Junctions”. He is also a Visiting Fellow at the International Centre for Policing and Security at the University of South Wales. Eldad Ben Aharon obtained his PhD in history from Royal Holloway University of London in 2019. His research lies at the intersection between international history, foreign policy analysis, elite interviews, and critical security studies.
Download: Ben Aharon, Eldad (2023): Between Geopolitics and Identitiy Struggle: Why Israel Took Sides with Azerbaijan in the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict, PRIF Report 1/2023, Frankfurt/M, DOI: 10.48809/prifrep2301