Comment: A message to Obama from Israel

The usual periodic report is making the rounds today in the world’s news media, suggesting that Israel is working on plans to attack Iran’s nuclear installations. The reports, which are clearly based on controlled leaks by the Israeli Ministry of Defense to friendly media outlets, such as The Jerusalem Post, claim that Israel is prepared to “launch a strike [against Iran] without backing from the US” and is thus “preparing options that do not include coordination” with its American ally. In reality, observers in the know are aware of the difficulties of such an operation and point to the remote possibility of an Israeli attack against Iran succeeding, without significant US intelligence and other logistical support. It is far more probable that this latest controlled leak from the Israeli Ministry of Defense is aimed as an open message to US President-Elect Barack Obama, whom Israeli political and military leaders are scrambling to steer into line as he prepares to assume the US Presidency. It was, after all, only a few days ago when Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz reported that Israel’s Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert ,used his farewell meeting with George Bush to ask the departing US President to “describe to his successor, Barack Obama, the American commitment to ensure that [Israel’s] strategic deterrence is not compromised”. Olmert’s team even drafted a list, approved by the White House, which was promptly “delivered to Obama’s transition team, that reviews all understandings and agreements” between Israel and the US. The reason for this sudden panic appears to be the expectation that the Obama Administration will “accelerate arms control efforts” in the Middle East. This, in plain language, means that the Obama Administration might agree to humor Iran’s ludicrous proposal that not only it, but all Middle Eastern nations should jointly agree to terminate their nuclear weapons programs and dispose of all their existing nuclear arsenals. If this materializes, “leading Israeli officials are concerned that […] Washington will call for restrictions on Israel’s nuclear capability as well”. The Olmert Administration thus appears to be promptly warning the incoming US President that Israel does not intend to subscribe to Barack Obama’s view of taking seriously Iran’s extremist and paranoid support for a multilateral and complete anti-nuclear treaty for the entire Middle Eastern region. A fair standard indeed from the Middle East’s so-called [pdf] “only functional democracy”. [JF]

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

2 Responses to Comment: A message to Obama from Israel

  1. Anon Ymous says:

    WHAT?! A U.S. president is not bowing to Israel? Imagine the gall! :s

  2. Missie says:

    It is my opinion that the U.S should bow to Israel. We are making a huge mistake if we do not side with Israel.

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