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attack on iran

  • Who needs anti-Semites when we've got Bibi?

    This time it's true: Israel really is trying to manipulate the U.S. into going to war.    Who can disagree any longer that Israel is out to push America into war – and is putting on quite a show of it, too? The Obama administration is trying to neutralize Iran’s nuclear program diplomatically, and Bibi Netanyahu and the Israel lobby are the unquestioned, highest-possible-profile leaders of the campaign to stop them. Netanyahu is all over TV around the world, beating the drum against this “very, very bad deal” being put together in the Geneva talks, which resume Wednesday. His American-accented…

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  • Israel rejects U.S. nuclear non-proliferation initiative

    Israeli exceptionalism continues. Iran is not allowed to go nuclear but it is perfectly okay for Israel to remain nuclear: that's the message Israel sends the world as it opposes a U.S.-backed conference about a nuclear-free Middle East. Here's what I wrote in March about the issue in The New York Times' Room for Debate: Might Israel attend the meeting about a nuclear-weapon-free Middle East in Finland? Certainly. Just like it has "participated" in the peace process — with no real intention of making concessions. In both cases, there are no consequences for Israel sticking to its agenda. So why would…

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  • Shas spiritual leader may have paved way for attack on Iran

    Last week, Benjamin Netanyahu sent National Security Council head Yaakov Amidror to the spiritual leader of Shas, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef. Apparently, this was done to convince the rabbi of the need to attack Iran. According to Haaretz political analyst Yossi Verter, Shas ministers Eli Yishai and Ariel Attias, “both members of the security cabinet, are thought to be opposed to an Iran attack.” Verter continues: There are 14 ministers in the security cabinet; eight of them in the above-mentioned octet (the forum of eight - A.K.). At the moment, two are definitely in favor of an Iran attack: Netanyahu and…

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  • 'Anonymous decision maker' advocating war with Iran is Ehud Barak

    The top stories in all Israeli dailies this weekend discuss a coming strike on Iran's nuclear facilities. Thirty-seven percent of Israelis think President Obama would stop Iran from developing a bomb, while only 29 percent doubt it. The front page headlines in all major daily papers in Israel deal with the increased likelihood of a war with Iran. Yedioth Aharonoth has an important expose: the paper's diplomatic correspondents, Nahum Barnea and Shimon Shiffer, report that Defense Minister Ehud Barak has gathered senior army generals twice (the latest meeting took place at Mossad headquarters) in order to obtain their support for…

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  • Are we rational? How biases could make war with Iran a possibility

    What are the some of cognitive biases that are influencing the recent bellicose rhetoric emanating from Jerusalem and Tehran? By Roi Ben-Yehuda It is said that wars begin in the minds of men. Considering the people charged with running Israel and Iran today, this is indeed a frightening prospect. But it’s also a chilling insight into the workings of the human mind in general. Why? Because our minds are filled with biases – unconscious and systematic errors of judgment – that make war with Iran an increasing possibility. We are, as psychologist and Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman argues, hardwired to…

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  • Five comments on the (troubling) situation

    What does the appointment of Home Front Defense Minister Matan Vilna’i to ambassador of China really mean? Why is Yair Lapid whining? Which is the most interesting political teaming-up so far? What is one of the main goals of the war on Iran campaign? And what do we know of Netanyahu’s crime solving abilities? Ni Hao Home Front Defense Minister Matan Vilna’i resigned from his post today so that the cabinet could approve his appointment to be ambassador to China. Thanks to a few Facebook friends*, I compiled a short list of questions that some of us had due to…

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  • Israel likely to bomb Iran this year - NY Times Magazine

    Israel appears set on attacking Iran's nuclear facilities this year, writes Ronen Bergman, intelligence expert  for Yediot Aharonot, in the cover story of the New York Times Magazine. He bases his prediction on interviews with many top security people, mainly Defense Minister Ehud Barak, who sat with him for several long discussions in Barak's Tel Aviv penthouse. Bergman wrote that during one of those interviews: Barak leaned forward and said with the utmost solemnity, "And if a nuclear Iran covets and occupies some gulf state, who will liberate it? The bottom line is that we must deal with the problem now." Bergman goes on to write that Israeli security…

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  • Apocalypse Soon: The aftermath of an attack on Iran

    Consensus opinion now seems to be that Israel will attack Iran. So it might be worth thinking about what sort of war might follow. It might also be worth thinking about how such a war would end. In the last month or so, there seems to have been a shift in perception about Israel’s plans for Iran. If before, a lot of informed people might have bet that if and when push came to shove, Israel would hold back from bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities, I don’t think there are many such bettors today. Quite a bit has happened recently. There was the…

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  • PLAY the Ehud Barak Game: “If I were ____, I would surely ____”

    Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak likes to imagine himself in different positions. And I don’t mean that in a kinky way. Yesterday he told Charlie Rose that if he were Iranian he’d probably want the bomb, too. In 1998, as many of you recall, Barak told Haartez journalist Gideon Levy that if he had been born Palestinian, he would have joined a terror organization, too. So, who will Barak imagine to be next? Mexican? Korean? An Ozzie? Or maybe, he’d like to be something or someone totally different? Maybe he’d like to be Madonna? Or Eddie Murhpy? Or a piece of…

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  • The “Obama Doctrine:” A blessing or a curse for the conflict?

    The end of the Gaddafi regime in Libya proved that U.S. President Barack Obama’s doctrine of “leading from behind” was a success. But the Obama Doctrine is not only a new approach to war - it extends to foreign policy on the whole, and therefore has already begun to affect the Israeli-Palestinian conflict When U.S. President Barack Obama decided to let other nations take a leading role during the war in Libya, the criticism was quick to come from every corner. They claimed he was doing too little, that he didn’t consult, that he was scared of using the air…

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  • Do the D.C. bomb plot and Schalit deal spell “war with Iran”?

    On the same day that a plot to kill a Saudi envoy in Washington was exposed, news of the Schalit deal was also top news. Both stories may have a common issue in the background - Tehran Yesterday, as I looked at the New York Times homepage, I didn’t know there might have been a connection between two of its main stories. The top story was the Washington bomb plot to assassinate a Saudi envoy, which the administration is connecting the dots all the way to Tehran. The story just under that was, of course, the biggest news in Israel…

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