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Friday, March 20, 2009

Israel vs Iranian Nuclear Capability

Most of us are aware at some level that Israel is very concerned about Iran developing a nuclear weapons capability.

Israel's concern is heightened by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad making comments about Israel not having a right to exist and denial of the "Holocaust." Of course, Iran talks to the plight of the Palestinians vis-a-via Israel.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC, has a long and detailed report on the various aspects of this problem.  The report, by CSIS Senior Associate Abdullah Toukan, can be found here.

I would like to tell you I have read it in detail, but I have just skimmed it.  There is, however, a typo on slide 37, last line.  It should be GBU-10, vice GB-10.  GBU stands for Guided Bomb Unit.  BLU stands for Bomb Live Unit.

Is an Iranian nuclear weapons capability an existential threat to Israel?

If so, what right does Israel have to deal with that threat?

Regards  --  Cliff


Craig H said...

Observing the crimes committed against Palestinian civilians by the Israeli military in Gaza, one might also usefully ask about the threat posed by Israel's nuclear capability.

The US is the only nation on earth to have ever dropped one of these things in anger, and we did it twice, knowing full well and for sure the second time how many civilians would be murdered and maimed in the process. It's not hard to understand why those who are at odds with us in the world might feel compelled to want one of their own.

If we're serious about deterrence and disarmament, we need to look long and hard at the abuses we commit, and the abuses we allow to be made by our "allies". Asking Iranians to forego the same privileges Israel enjoys as a nuclear power will not be reasonable unless and until we make meaningful curbs to Israeli aggression against civilians, for one thing. Better behavior on our part (i.e. not de facto declaring war based on fabricated evidence and in defiance of our own constitution for starters) would be a big help, too.

While we're at it, we might even consider making things right (i.e. initiating true due process) for the Iranian nationals held in Guantanamo, (including a Christian, if you like irony), and learning to respect the sovereignty and rights of all, and not just all who we prefer or with whom we agree.

C R Krieger said...

I depart from Kad on referring to the dead in Nagasaki as people murdered.  On the other hand, he is correct about Israel pursuing a wrong headed policy toward the Palestinians in Gaza.  At the same time the Palestinians are waging war on Israel.

But, if it was wrong, for instance, for the US to invade Iraq, is it right for us to be heavy handed with Israel?  Maybe the massive foreign aid gives us the right.  But, does the same apply to Egypt?  (Egypt over the years runs at about 2/3 of Israel in that area.)

Ah, for a perfect world.

Regards  --  Cliff