Feb 6, 2012

Israeli Strike on Iran Appears Ever More Likely

In a recent interview for NBC quoted by Reuters, Obama says
I don't think that Israel has made a decision on what they need to do. I think they, like us, believe that Iran has to stand down on its nuclear weapons program.
What he does not say, however, is that the US would be against such an attack. He appears to leave the diplomatic door completely open for Israel to do as they see fit to protect their national security. The timing
of Netanyahu's statement that
In such a region, the only thing that ensures our existence, security and prosperity is our strength
as quoted by Bloomberg is certainly no coincidence. Overall it looks ever more likely that Israel will resort to military action against Iran, barring a breakthrough in the talks on Iran's nuclear program.

To start with, Iran's claim that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes rings very hollow. The country is a major exporter of oil after all! They should have at least tried to fabricate some evidence that their oil reserves are going to be depleted in the near future, which would justify the need for civilian use of nuclear power.

Israel's intelligence services have already been taking covert action inside Iran, such as the assassination by car bomb of one of Iran's nuclear scientist in January. Mosad's involvement is unconfirmed but it appears almost certain. Also we need to remember that Iran is one of the several Middle Eastern states that consider Israel has no reason to exist. Given the already extreme level of mutual animosity, Israel would lose little (and possibly gain a lot!) by striking first.

(For more WhatIf posts click here)

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