November 12, 2013
If Bibi Netanyahu succeeds in closing down Obama’s diplomatic path to Iran, only the road to war remains open.
Which is exactly what Bibi wants.
For what terrifies Tel Aviv, and rattles Riyadh, is not a U.S. war with Iran, but the awful specter of American rapprochement with Iran, a detente.
Thus, when France’s foreign minister torpedoed the deal John Kerry flew to Geneva to sign, France soared in neocon esteem. The “cheese-eating surrender monkeys ” of 2003 who opposed the Iraq war suddenly became again the heroes of Verdun and the Marne.
“Vive La France” blared the Wall Street Journal editorial declaiming, “Francois Hollande’s Socialist Government has saved the West from a deal that would all but guarantee that Iran becomes a nuclear power.”
Did Hollande really save the West? Or did he just rack up points with the Saudi princes for when the next big arms contract comes up for bid?
What is going on is a gravely serious matter.
If the Netanyahu cabal succeeds in sabotaging U.S. negotiations with Iran, it is hard to see how we avoid another war that could set the Persian Gulf region ablaze and sink the global economy.
And just what is it that has Netanyahu apoplectic?
A six-month deal under which Iran would freeze all enrichment of uranium, in return for a modest lifting of sanctions, while the final agreement is negotiated. The final deal would put permanent limits and controls on Iran’s nuclear program to ensure it is not used to build bombs.
And there would be more and more intrusive inspections.
How would this imperil Israel?
Iran today has no atom bomb. Has never tested a bomb. Has never exploded a nuclear device. Possesses not a single known ounce of 90 percent enriched uranium, which is essential for a uranium bomb.
Nor does Iran have enough 20 percent uranium to make a bomb. And part of the stockpile it did have has been converted into fuel rods. There are inspectors in all of Iran’s operating nuclear facilities.
The Ayatollah has declared a fatwa against nuclear weapons. The Hassan Rouhani regime says it has no nuclear weapons program.
And U.S. intelligence agrees with Iran.
All 16 U.S. intelligence agencies in 2007, and, again, two years ago, said, with high confidence, that Iran has made no decision to build a bomb and has no nuclear weapons program.
How would new restrictions and reductions on an Iranian nuclear program that has never produced an ounce of weapons-grade uranium, let alone a bomb, threaten Israel, with its hundreds of atom bombs?
“You can’t trust the Iranians. They’re lying about their nuclear program,” says Lindsey Graham.