Modern Diplomacy has published an article explaining how the Eastern Mediterranean region has become a flashpoint for geopolitical conflicts, struggles for regional hegemony and control of economic resources and competition for soft religious power, as well as interference in the politics of others.
The author of the article James Dorsey says that the complexities of conflicts and conflicting interests expand the scope of focus on what is outside Russia when it comes to interference in the elections, to include Turkey, the UAE and Saudi Arabia, and it blurs the lines between multiple conflicts such as the wars in Syria and Libya and the struggle for control over Gas sites discovered in the eastern Mediterranean.
The article notes that the waters of the eastern Mediterranean have become the latest place in which Russia and the West compete for influence, after the discovery of gas reserves amounting to 122 trillion cubic feet.
Perhaps the most important is the extent to which Europe will be able in the future to reduce its dependence on Russian gas, as Moscow currently meets about 40% of the European Union's gas needs.
The writer says that the ability to reduce gas imports from Russia, thanks to Eastern Mediterranean gas, will enable Europe to take a more powerful position in the conflict between Western liberalism and Russian civilization, which is likely to form the world order.
The dependence on Russian gas has pushed European countries to reduce their defenses of Western values in exchange for the policies of Russian President Vladimir Putin, which include seizing lands in the Caucasus and Ukraine, intimidating Central Asian countries, supporting the extremist right, anti-immigration and neo-Nazis, and strengthening groups most sympathetic to the worldview of the Russian leader. .
The writer quotes Dimitri Trenin, head of the Carnegie Moscow Center, as saying that "the bad news is that the confrontation between Washington and Moscow will continue, and the good news is that there will be a fence built around it."
Trenin believes that the eastern Mediterranean will be the region of tension, not the Crimea, the Baltic, the Arctic, or southeastern Europe.
Dorsey explains that if the conflict for countries such as Greece, Cyprus and Lebanon is an economic affair centered on the resources of the eastern Mediterranean, then the priority for other countries such as Egypt and Israel is to extend influence, as well as Russia and Turkey.
Turkey, the writer continues, raised the risks with its military support for the Libyan Government of National Accord against the retired Major General Khalifa Haftar, who is supported by the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Russia.
In addition, the agreement concluded by Ankara with Tripoli, which led to the establishment of an economic zone in the eastern Mediterranean, linked the war in Syria to the conflict in the eastern Mediterranean and Libya, especially with building relationships between Haftar and the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
And the economic zone created by the agreement would block the route of the pipeline to be transported Israeli gas to Europe.
The writer points out that the economic zone, if it is imposed successfully, along with Turkey's military performance in Syria, will be an indication for regional countries aspiring to hegemony, such as Saudi Arabia and the UAE, that the funds may not be sufficient to impose the will.