You know why [Obama thinks] a nuclear Iran would be a disaster for global security? Because Israel might do something stupid… it’s not that there’s something inherently problematic about letting an apocalyptic Islamic state acquire nuclear weapons but rather that those jumpy Israelis will overreact. Otherwise nuanced American foreign policy diplomats would be able to deftly steer everyone into a tranquil sea of stability…. so when Israel gets around to bombing Iran in response to explicitly genocidal threats coming from across the Iranian political spectrum: who do you think an Obama State Department will blame for “destabilizing” the region?
Former Obama foreign policy adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, 12/08/2008:
Zbigniew Brzezinski, the former national security adviser to Jimmy Carter, said in an interview with Haaretz over the weekend that Israel will do harm to its relations with the United States if it insists on lobbying Washington for an American military strike on Iran… “One [piece of] advice that I would give the Israeli government is not to engage in this campaign for an American attack on Iran, because I don’t think America is going to attack Iran, and if it did, and the consequences would be disastrous.” “It wouldn’t be particularly good for American-Israeli relations, and there will be a lot of resentment against [Israel],” he said. “There already has been some after the war in Iraq.”
What. A. Tool. The Iraq war only caused anti-Israel resentment because Brzezinski and his ideological ilk blamed it on Israel – despite how Sharon advised Bush against it and even though US Jews overwhelmingly opposed it. And now Israel is supposed to let a genocidal regime get nuclear weapons because Walt and Mearsheimer published an unseemly screed that effectively used anti-Semitic tropes to exaggerate AIPAC’s strength. Outstanding.
It’s probably not worth mentioning that rumors of Israeli pressure on the US government in the context of Iran might actually help engagement succeed. An Iranian regime that genuinely believes that the US is gearing up for an attack is an Iranian regime that might be more willing to take some economic incentives and call it a victory.
Because this is how it’s going to be during the Obama administration. Liberal foreign policy experts can’t admit that their ideas about the Middle East are kind of silly and that deep-seated ideological differences make tension inevitable. So they pull the equivalent of the drunk who looks for his lost keys under a lamp because that’s where there’s light: they blame Israel of the entire length and breadth of Middle East instability and pressure Israel to make concessions. And to justify their anti-Israel obsession they cling to nonsense about how Israel is the barrier to Israeli-Palestinian peace.
So when Obama’s engagement with Iran fails it’s going to be because Israel radicalized US policy makers. Not because even the French know that talks are doomed to fail. Not because Iran is cool to sitting with Obama anyway. But because Israel thinks US military action against Iran would enhance global security – something the Washington Post suggested two years ago.
It almost seems like Obama’s victory has trapped Israel between letting Iran get nukes or detonating US-Israel relations. If Israel waits to attack Iran gets nukes. If Israel attacks now they get blamed for knocking the knees out of Obama’s foreign policy. And – the best part – Israel will get scapegoated for failed talks anyway because they “inflame the region” by not “taking risks” for peace. If only someone had mentioned this before the election.
References and previously after the jump…
* Obama Figures Out The Real Problem With Iranian Nuclearization (Plus: Obama’s Foreign Policy Kneejerks Provide Excellent Illustration Of Exactly How He’d Screw Israel) [MR]
* Zbigniew Brzezinski: Israel’s push for Iran strike may hurt U.S. ties [Ha'aretz]
* Top Obama Adviser Explains Iraq War: Turns Out, It’s The Jews’ Fault. Again. (Plus: Ha’aretz Political Correspondent’s Pro-Obama Apologism Getting Increasingly Desperate) [MR]
* Overstating Jewish Power [Hitchens / Slate]
* Obama Foreign Policy Appointees: Israel To Blame For Mideast Instability, Sweeping Concessions Necessary [MR]
* Sarkozy: Of Course Obama’s Iran Policy Is Imbecilic [MR]
* Mathematical Proof That Negotiating With Iran Is Stupid. Not Wrong. Stupid. [MR]
* Iran Rejects Talks With Obama, Foreign Policy Sophisticates Confused [MR]
* Washington Post: We Were Wrong. Please Bomb Iran and Syria ASAP. Thank You. [MR]
* Head of nuclear watchdog calls efforts against Iran ‘a failure’ [LAT]
* Australia Embraces Anti-Israel Diplomacy In Anticipation Of Obama Administration
* Obama Ignores Top Government Military Expert On Key National Security Question. Again.
* Rahm Emanuel’s Celebrated Pro-Israel Stance Growing Increasingly Sophisticated