Free Beacon 
April 2, 2019
The Trump administration’s recent recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the contested Golan Heights territory is part of a larger effort by the White House to open new fronts in efforts to combat Iranian militants and terror proxies in the region, according to U.S. officials familiar with the decision.
President Donald Trump won plaudits from the pro-Israel community and allies on Capitol Hill when he announced that America would officially recognize the Golan territory on Israel’s northern border as belonging to the Jewish state, which annexed the area following war with Syria several decades ago.
U.S. officials last week faced down critics of this decision at the United Nations, a forum unfriendly to the Jewish state, telling member countries that the Trump administration will take every step necessary to protect Israel’s right to self defense against Iranian militants and Hezbollah fighters who have used the Golan area to launch terrorist attacks on Israel.
Behind the scenes, U.S. officials acknowledge that the decision to formally recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights is due in no small part to Iran’s efforts to station militant fighters and terror proxy groups such as Hezbollah on the Jewish state’s borders. In Syria, for instance, Iran has operated with impunity and made the most of the country’s unrest by sending scores of highly trained militants.
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