Israel / Political Views

I don’t believe that Israel will attack Iran before the 2012 election. This is why


Dear readers, I have redone the blog post.  It turns out that a draft copy was sent to all my subscribers which had even more grammar and spelling mistakes than normal.  I apologize and ask you to read it again. Thanks.

These are my views on a very complex situation.
Iran is trying to provoke Israel into attacking it. The result would be a massive change of sentiment particularly in Europe and America. Israel would find herself even more Isolated.  Iran would then be able to play the victim. The ruling Iranian government bodies would get more support from their populace. Few Iranians would be injured or killed since Israel’s target would be the reactor facilities which are not located near population centers. The Iranians would have an excuse for delaying making a bomb, and a better reason to have one. But while Iran is playing this game, they are paying a high price because of crippling sanctions.
Israel wants to convince the USA that it is willing to attack Iran and wants to get concessions from the Obama government. Some of these involve actions that the USA would take against Iran in different situations.  Some involve things that will never be made public. Israel is in a good position to get these concessions because Obama does not want Israel to attack Iran before the election.  Such an attack would have a very negative effect on oil prices which could tank the US economy and could cost him the election. Furthermore, Obama would be in a very difficult position responding to the Israeli action.

If Obama wins the election, he will probably honor whatever commitments he made to Israel.  If he loses to a Republican, that person will probably honor the commitments and maybe even give a bit more. But things could get out of hand.  There are militant elements in Iran and Israel that actually want to have this war.  There are also such elements in the United States Congress.

I also believe that Israel has infiltrated the Iranian government and military computers.  It would not be surprising to me, that if  Iran launched missiles at Israel they might “accidentally” blow up Iranian cities.  The Iranians probably suspect that this might be the case.

Now, I need to get back to writing my novel.

8 thoughts on “I don’t believe that Israel will attack Iran before the 2012 election. This is why

  1. Avram, it would be great if you could elaborate on the specifics that support your contention that “Iran is trying to provoke Israel into attacking it.” You provide some speculation about why it would be to Iran’s advantage if Israel did attack it, but not any evidence that it is in fact doing so. Perhaps I’ve missed these specifics in my monitoring of the news

    I think that a very different scenario is at play–I believe that the U.S. desperately wants Iran to use US dollars for its oil sales rather than the Euro or some other currency and this is the real reason for our sanctions and aggressive rhetoric. It may also be the reason why we ultimately are willing to enter a war with Iran, one which will, as you indicate, start with Israel’s attack on Iranian reactors.

    I predict that Israel will attack Iran by sometime in May.

    Iran will respond by blocking the Strait of Hormuz and possibly making strikes on U.S. bases or holdings, as it has indicated it will do if Israel precipitates an attack on Iran.

    Obama will publicly state that he, regretfully, has no other choice but to send U.S. troops into harm’s way to protect our interests in the Middle East, and keep the oil shipments flowing. This will (his administration hopes) take people’s minds off the slow economic recovery and portray him as a strong warhawk CINC, who compares favorably to any Republican leader, and also cause Americans to rally around our troops, even though most Americans are tired of unending wars in the region.

    Far from hurting Obama, a war with Iran will strengthen his standing with centrists and right-leaning voters, and actually help him in November.

    The interesting question in my mind is how and if the U.S. can get Iran to use the dollar again for its oil currency, which is, again, the real reason we are taking such an aggressive stand with Iran (and was also one of the key reasons we took a simlar stand with Hussein/Iraq in the years leading up to our invasion.

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  2. Joe, thanks so much for reading my post and commenting on it. I almost never get a comment so I appreciate it.

    The combination of a Iranian government whose president has called for the distraction of the state of Israel and atomic weapons creates as an exsitential threat to the state of Israel where a 1/3 of all Jews live. Israel is as I am sure you know an extremely small country. Israel is just 8,000 square miles (and a big part of that is desert). Iran is 168,000 square miles. Have you ever been to Israel Joe?

    I of course disagree with your belief that Israel will attack Iran before May. Are you a betting man?

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  3. Avram, it’s my pleasure. I have a great respect for your mind, and enjoy very much reading your posts, especially about your life; I’m hoping you will eventually publish an autobiography, which I would read with great interest, as would many others.

    The rhetoric from Iran (and from many other countries in that region over the decades) about the destruction of Israel is not a basis on which to provoke an attack on Iran before Iran has made an attack–that logic is similar to Bush’s unfortunate ‘preemptive strike doctrine’ which basically says ‘if you think someone’s going to hit you, you have the right to hit him first’.

    Moreover, remember that Israel and Pakistan are the only two countries in the region that actually have existing nuclear missile stockpiles, so even if Israel thought that Iran’s current stance was dangerous, Israel has not only its conventional forces to rely on (which, as you know, are some of the best in the world and some of the best equipped), but also its nuclear arsenal as a last resort, and, of course, the enthusiastic backing of the U.S.

    I have not been to Israel or Iran. Hopefully, you don’t see that as a bar to my providing a reasoned argument about the situation (even if you disagree with my predictions)?

    I am a betting man. I said ‘by sometime in May’. If I understand your original assertion correctly, you’re saying that an attack won’t happen before November 4th/election day. Is that the bet you’d like to make? How about $20?

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  4. I do not think the situation with Bush has much to do with this situation. There was no existential treat to the USA. Four atomic bombs (or maybe three) would wipe out Israel. Yes, Israel could retaliate and wipe out Iran but that would be a hollow victory for the few that survived.
    I have lived in Israel and go often. I have also been to Iran a few times. But I do not think you need to do this to have an opinion but I do find that peoples opinion of the situation changes once they visit Israel.
    I will give you odds. You put up $50 and I will put up $150. Ok?

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  5. If you support Israel attacking Iran before Iran has attacked Israel, then it seems to me you are advocating a pre-emptive strike doctrine. Can’t see any difference.

    You talk about 4 atomic bombs wiping out Israel, the presumption being that those bombs would come from Iran. But Iran doesn’t have any atomic bombs and is not close to having them, whereas Israel has had nuclear weapons for a long time and government officials have indicated a willingness to use them. Thus, any threat of nuclear annihilation of Israel by Iran at the current time is empty rhetoric.

    Further, by the logic you’ve used, why wouldn’t Iran be justified in attacking Israel, who does have nukes, and has threatened publicly to attack Iran?

    Don’t get me wrong–I don’t want to see Israel attacked by anyone, but I also don’t like the warhawk stance of the Israeli government, and neither does Ruth Dayan, Moshe’s widow. If anyone should be credible on the issue of war and peace, I think it should be her and she is uncategorically against the stance of Netanyu’s leadership when it comes to the use of military force. While the following quotations don’t address Iran per se, I think it clearly shows where her head’s at when it comes to resolving issues through war vs. through negotiation and her extreme disapproval of Netanyahu’s handling of relations with neighboring Arabs:

    . “I reject Netanyahu’s policy; it is a recipe for disaster. He is unwilling to address the issue. It’s a bunker mentality. We had the Oslo accords, which established Palestinian control over certain areas in the West Bank and Gaza, while other areas remained under mixed control. The accords established the Palestinian Authority and police force, but nothing has changed. The number of settlements has increased from 60 to 200, military checkpoints are everywhere, and freedom of movement is virtually nonexistent. Violence is still the only spoken language. I don’t try to instill optimism in my Palestinian friends. Out of courtesy, I tell them that I hope something will change. But I don’t speak about peace anymore; I don’t have the courage. I’m friends with so many Arabs. My soulmate is Raymonda Tawil, Arafat’s mother-in-law. This government does not represent my values. It’s gone so far. Both sides think they are freedom fighters.”

    and this:

    “We built this country inch by inch, and we lost so many lives. We built public and social institutions, schools, factories. What’s going on today is awful. They’re ruining this country. I am a proud Israeli. I’ve lived through every war, endured every moment of suffering, but I never stopped believing in peace. I lost friends and family members. I’m a peacemaker, but the current Israeli government does not know how to make peace. We move from war to war, and this will never stop. I think Zionism has run its course.”

    These quotations are from this interview with Ruth Dayan:
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2011/10/30/moshe-dayan-s-widow-ruth-zionist-dream-has-run-its-course.html

    I don’t doubt that if I were fortunate enough to have formed my opinion after having visited both countries (or even one) that it would help better inform my perspective, but alas haven’t been wise enough or fortunate enough to visit either.

    I will take your bet, but just want to be sure of the trigger conditions–is the bet only limited to whether or not Israel and/or the U.S. attack Iran (including either ground or air or naval forces) by end of May?

    Or does the bet include an either/or condition by which EITHER a) an attack is initiated by the U.S. and/or Israel by end of May (again, by one or more of conventional ground forces, air or naval) OR b) the attack doesn’t happen by end of May but does happen after the 11/4/12 election (and ends by some date afterward)?

    Do we agree that if an attack happens between 5/31/12 and 11/4/12 that neither of us win?

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  6. I have never said that I support a preemptive attack. My post did not express my views in this matter. I was describing what I think is happening or could happen.
    Frankly, I am not sure what Israel should do. It is kind of a lose lose situation. But I do not think that any Israeli leader can allow Iran to have a bomb.

    You do not know that they are not close to making a bomb. But even if they are two years away, Israel has a very small window to take action since they have limited capabilities and Iran is fortifing and multiplying their reactor sites.

    Israel has never called for the destruction of Iran as far as I know. Can you site examples of this? Israel would never use an Atomic Bomb first. That is a long held policy.

    The situation with respect to Palestine does not have much to do with this. It is a sad situation with fault on both sides. I too have Palestinian friends. I long for the day when there is peace. Iran’s behavior has nothing to do with the future of Palestine.

    I don’t care for the current government of Israel but then again I did not care for the Bush administration is responsible for many more deaths of arabs then Israel.

    We need a better definition of the bet. If the USA a conformation with a Iranian navy ship, I would not count that.

    I am talking about a serious military action with the objective of stoping or slowing the development of the Iranian nuclear capability. I agree with the dates.

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  7. My goal was not to compare the situation in Palestine with that in Iran, only to point out that while Ruth Dayan’s comments pertain specifically to Israel’s hawkish stance with respect to Palestine, her comments about what she sees as an untenable predisposition towards war to settle conflicts could be said to apply to any State that has threatened Israel with destruction (and we know that there are several of those). I think if you read the interview with her, you will see how her comments apply to both situations.

    There was today a story about a poll taken in Israel asking the Israeli people their views on Israel attacking Iran.

    Here’s a particularly interesting excerpt from the piece which could be read in full here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/on-iran-strike-israelis-t_b_1313229.html

    “In a poll conducted this month by Professor Shibley Telhami of the University of Maryland and Israel’s Dahaf Institute, only 19 percent of Israelis said they would support an Israeli military attack on Iran if it is not approved by the U.S.

    But that’s not even the most striking result of the poll.

    The poll suggests that the reason that the majority of Israelis don’t support an Israeli military strike on Iran without U.S. approval is not because they are afraid of making the U.S. angry. The poll suggests that the reason that the majority of Israelis do not support an Israeli military strike on Iran without U.S. approval is that they share the cautions of U.S. officials against an Israeli strike on Iran: they think that the costs would be high, and the benefits small or nonexistent.

    That is, they see the assessments of U.S. officials of the dubious merits of an Israeli strike as good data — better data than they are getting from Prime Minister Netanyahu.

    A majority of Israelis think an Israeli war with Iran would last months or years. Two-thirds think Hizbullah would join Iran in retaliating against Israel. As many Israelis think an Israeli military strike would strengthen Iran’s government as think it would weaken it. A slim majority think an Israeli strike would delay Iran’s nuclear program by more than a year; nearly a third think it would have no effect on Iran’s nuclear program or even accelerate it.”

    One of the ways a serious U.S. military action against Iran might take place is initially through a confrontation between the U.S. Navy and the Iranian Navy, as a result of the Iranian Navy blockading the Strait to prevent oil shipments.

    What is the ending date you would propose for after the 11/4/12 election, after which the bet would no longer be valid?

    Also, how should we define the scope of the confrontation, per your comments above?

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  8. Joe, your points about public opinion just add weight to my position that Israel will not attach Iran before the election. I find it strange that you would bet that they would but I am happy to take your bet. Let make the end date 1/1/13. The definition would be an attack by Israel on any Iranian nuclear facilities. This would include an attack by the USA with participation by Israel. Are we in agreement?

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