Turkey-based Syrian military analyst Colonel (Ret.) Hatem Al-Rawi said in a June 27, 2022 interview on the Arabic-language Channel 9, a Turkey-based Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated channel, that in the past, his blood would boil whenever he saw an Israeli flag, but that he now welcomes the Israeli flag when strikes Iranian militias and assets in Syria. He said that even though Israel is still an occupier, his views towards it have changed because of the regional threat posed by Iran. He elaborated that Iran’s actions in the region have already turned Israel into no more than an "enemy on hold" in the eyes of the Arab world, and he said that a "Middle Eastern NATO" will happen "with us our without us". For more about Al-Rawi, see MEMRI TV Clip No. 8695.
Hatem Al-Rawi: "The [so-called] Middle Eastern NATO is happening with us or without us.
"People in the Middle East, in all the countries, have all been affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, because the whole world is paying more for everything. This is with regard to Russia.
"In addition, the entire Middle East has been affected by Iran's expansion, and the spreading of its nonsensical ideas in the region. The Middle East that used to reject even the word 'Israel'...
"I swear by Allah that as an Arab man and an officer in the Syrian army, when I would see the Israeli flag on TV, my blood would begin to boil.
"But when I, with the same blood in my body, see on the same TV set how Israel strikes the Iranian militias in Syria, and Damascus International Airport – I welcome that Israeli flag.
"How has such an anti-Israeli person like myself undergone such a change? I am not saying that I welcome Israel. It is still an occupier, but complete peaceful [restraint] has taken over all the Arabs and Muslims.
"Iran's moves, the hatred [it spreads], and everything we have seen in the Arab countries, have brought about peaceful [restraint] towards Israel. It got to the point that we say that Israel is, at most, an enemy on hold. All of this is because of Iran's actions in the region."