By John Stanton
Enough of the tail wagging the dog! This has been going on for too many years. The US must publicly keep a close hold on Israel as it openly works with Iran. We must not let Israel set policy for the USA.
It's time for US officials to tell the Israeli leadership and its US supporters at the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), in the White House, US Congress and various think tanks -- like the Iran Policy Committee (iranpolicy.org/index.php) -- to stop acting like preschoolers fighting and arguing in a playground or sandbox. For example, the Iran Policy Committee goes so far as to say that Al Qaeda and Iran threaten the security of California.
Ditch the demonization campaigns and silly rhetoric and feckless congressional resolutions that antagonize those we seek to cooperate with. Cease and desist from linking World War II era characters, like Hitler, and woeful events like the Holocaust from the 1930' and 40's with 2009. The world gets it.
The world knows that Holocaust deniers are fools, as are those who seek to use the Holocaust as a shield against criticism. The world also knows that many of its leaders are fools, yet they hold the reins of power.
The world also knows that if Israel were faced with existential termination, it would take the world with it by launching all of its 300 nuclear weapons in every direction.
Israel Stays Put
The facts are these. Rand's recent report Dangerous But Not Omnipotent, the East-West Institute's report Iran's Nuclear and Missile Potential, and no less than Martin van Crevald -- the great Israeli military historian -- advise against any type of strategic attack on Iran and suggest that a nuclear Iran can be tolerated (www.forward.com/articles/11673/). Iran is not a strategic threat to Europe, the USA or its neighbors. Iran's control over Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Shia community throughout the Middle East is exaggerated.
Israel does not attack Iran without getting through, or is allowed to get through, US air and sea power. The US military controls the airspace over the Persian Gulf/Indian Ocean, Iraq, Afghanistan and much of the Mediterranean. It controls the seaspace above and below water with its formidable attack and special operations capable submarines and carrier battle groups. The US military controls outerspace over this geography too with its tracking satellites and its anti-satellite capabilities.
Israel does not exist without US economic and military support. The US government provides billions in military and economic aid each year to Israel. That funding will continue for as long as the two nations function.
The US military is firmly entrenched on Israeli soil in many capacities such as missile defense and Foreign Internal Defense personnel making a strategic attack by another nation on Israel highly unlikely.
Israel, thanks to its intrepid espionage network (that spies extensively on the US Defense Industrial Base) and innovative science community is nuclear equipped. Thanks to US military aid, Israel has an assortment of delivery vehicles including F-16's and F-15's. It has three submarines built by the Germans that are likely retrofitted to launch nuclear tipped cruise missiles.
Obama in Iran?
President Barak Obama has the ability to perform a "Nixon in China" with Iran's leadership and its people. The opportune time for that would be a few months after the Iranian elections on 12 June 2009. The outcome of that election may well see new faces and ideologies in charge of the Iranian governing structure. The prospects of change there appear bright.
According to Israelnationalnews.com, "…Iranian reformist candidate Mehdi Karroubi has come out with public criticism of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for his stance on the Holocaust (Shoah). By denying the Holocaust, Ahmadinejad is doing Israel a service and isolating Iran," he said. Karroubi accused Ahmadinejad of angering the West for no reason through his controversial statements. He also accused Ahmadinejad of worsening the standoff over Iran's nuclear program by ignoring United Nations resolutions. He has promised to change Iran's image if elected, and to seek dialogue with the West.
A second reformist candidate, former Iranian Prime Minister Mir Hussein Moussavi, has voiced similar criticism regarding Ahmadinejad's stance on the Holocaust and his antagonism towards the West. Moussavi, who is considered Ahmadinejad's strongest opponent, has also vowed to pursue international dialogue if elected, and to guarantee freedom of speech and freedom of the press within Iran."
It's Religion that Binds and Blinds
The Rand report referenced above indicates that …"The U.S. ability to gauge the extent and totality of these [Iranian] challenges is ultimately handicapped by the lack of official relations between the two states since the Islamic Revolution and, more subtly, by a lingering sense of national trauma from the hostage crisis of 1979-1981."
Yes, that and the persistent US "special friend" policy of "can do no wrong" for Israel. For example. the US supported a senseless and ruthless military action in Gaza in 2009. Why? That not being enough, the US went on to sell dense inert metal explosives to the Israeli's for use in that campaign resulting in horrific wounds never before seen on a modern battlefield. Why?
How many US presidents have negotiated with contumacious world leaders? From Stalin to Mao, to the current Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia and President of Egypt, US presidents have negotiated in the interests of the USA with people far worse than what Iran has sitting at the presidential leadership table (Ahmadinejad). How many US presidents have approved covert/military action and the destabilization/overthrow of regimes throughout the world? Iraq, Iran, Central and South America can speak to these actions?
Which two recent US presidents have openly authorized the use of torture/rendition and the establishment of US penal colonies of as a matter of US policy? GW Bush and Barak Obama surely don't seem bothered by the screams and groans of the tortured.
Alas, we come to the religious foundation of the US-Israel "special friendship" and the madness that that relationship is based on and how it colors US policy.
Since Israel is of no strategic value to the US (minor trade and tourism), there has to be something more that binds the two. And that binding agent is found on all US currency: In God We Trust. It's the shared myth that is Judeo-Christian religion/tradition that connects the US and Israel. God fearing US leadership is blind to the wrongs perpetrated by the Israelis, the chosen ones, who occupy, rather protect, Judeo-Christianity's origin point. It therefore is imperative that 'God's will" or God's interests in Israel be protected at all costs, no matter how severe. And so the hapless Palestinians must be bombed (with US supplied ammunition) and tortured into oblivion. A new enemy must be created. Hence, Iran and it must be vanquished. It's "God's will that we must submit to", said Obama recently in a speech at the University of Notre Dame.
Submitting and placing trust in the same God that idly sat by while his only son was tortured and then died a horrible death on a crucifix is not wise. And trusting leaders who believe in such a God to bring some sort of stability to the Middle East, or the world at large, is folly.
Who knew how blind Obama was?
John Stanton is a Virginia based writer specializing in national security and political matters. Reach him at cioran123[at]yahoo.com.