Home > International politics, Iran > Don’t do it, Bibi

Don’t do it, Bibi

After his awkward meeting at the White House, Netanyahu is more determined than ever to nuke Iran, even if Israel has to go it alone in view of Obama’s sensible reticence. I understand his fear of Iran. More anti-Semitic than Iranians, you die ( though for a while now, the feeling has been conveniently repackaged and presented as sympathy for the plight of the Palestinians). The present Iranian regime loathes Israel and might well attempt to bomb it out of existence the day it finally has a nuclear weapon, so Netanyahu voices legitimate fear when he says that he “will never allow my people to live in the shadow of annihilation.”

But nuke Iran? Even with all assurances that the operation would target specific sites, with little collateral damage, how well does that work? Look at the covert U.S. operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, or Pakistan. People die–they always do. Beside causing a greater rift between the U.S. and Israel, which would make even more unlikely a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian situation, other consequences would be dire for the region. Alliances would shift in an already highly volatile environment, rendered more unpredictable with the fall last year of various Arab dictatorships. The day the awful Bashar Assad, presently armed to the teeth by the Islamic Republic of Iran and Russia, also falls, Iran will be left without a single ally in the region. The regime sorely needs allies, now that it can no longer count on Venezuelan Chavez who is battling both cancer and serious opposition or Erdogan who has obviously reached the conclusion that his strategic overtures to Iran no longer serves Turkey’s interests.

Iran is racing against time and all the posturing in the world from its grotesque leadership will not change that. With the combined weight of sanctions, internal opposition, warring factions of ersatz liberals in Ahmadinejad’s immediate entourage and arch-conservative mullahs in the Supreme Leader’s, it is, like Putin in Russia, hanging on by a thread. In the 1960s, another Russian, Krushchev, described the Shah’s Iran as a ripening fruit that would soon fall under its own weight (or would be there for the plucking, something like that). The metaphor applies well to Iran today.

So give it time, Bibi; you’re no Golda Meir and times have changed. And listen to your constituents who don’t care what happens as long as Madonna’s concert in Tel Aviv takes place as scheduled in May.

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