Three intertwined fundamental problems can be considered the source of instability in the Middle East. These are the Palestine issue, the ambitions of non-regional actors in the region, and the activities of terrorist groups and non-state actors.
The Palestine issue essentially arose from the failure to establish the independent and sovereign Jewish and Arab states envisaged in the United Nations General Assembly resolution of 1947. Currently, a large part of the lands designated for the Arab state in the UN decision are under Israeli occupation. Approximately five million Palestinians from these lands live as refugees in the surrounding countries. Numerous peace plans developed since 1967 have failed.
After the First World War, Britain and France established mandate regimes in the former Ottoman lands, and their interest in the region never diminished even after they withdrew their militaries from this region during the interwar period and after the Second World War. After the defeat of the Axis powers, the USA and the USSR began to have a strong presence in the Middle East due to the geopolitical importance of the region.
Controlling the Suez Canal and the Strait of Hormuz, which are among the most important trade routes in the world, is necessary for global leadership. Likewise, controlling the rich hydrocarbon reserves in the region is another goal. After the Cold War, on the one hand, the presence of the USA in the region increased, and on the other hand, during the Syrian civil war, Russia settled in this country militarily. The emerging powers of the 21st century, China and India, are also increasing their visibility in the region by establishing warm political and economic relations with countries there, especially Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Terrorist organisations and non-state actors aiming to establish separate states are also among the important sources of instability in the region. It is seen that these are used in various ways by both regional and non-regional actors who want to control the Middle East’s dynamics.
It is not possible to achieve permanent peace and stability in the Middle East without solving these three problems. It is also extremely difficult to troubleshoot these problems. In a global environment where the United Nations cannot work in accordance with its founding purposes and principles, the Palestine Issue cannot be resolved, so extra-regional actors cannot be removed from the region, nor can an effective fight against terrorist organisations be carried out.
It is the primary duty of the United Nations to ensure international peace and security. For this to happen, the reform of the United Nations Security Council is essential. The Security Council structure established after the Second World War, under the conditions of that day, is not compatible with today's global realities. First of all, the number of permanent members of the Security Council must be increased, in accordance with the fair representation principle. Secondly, the "veto" privilege given to permanent members should be ended. Finally, decisions should be taken by qualified majority vote.