Israel says still has military option on Iran
Monday, September 21, 2009
Israel has not given up the option of a military response to Tehran's nuclear programme, senior officials said on Monday, after Russia's president said his Israeli counterpart assured him it would not attack Iran.When Russia's President Medvedev said recently that "his Israeli counterpart assured him it would not attack Iran," I was skeptical to say the least. Why would Israel give up it's most realistic chance to stop Iran's nuclear program? And it turned out I was right. Israeli officials made it clear today that the nuclear option is still on the table.
The chief-of-staff of Israel's armed forces, Lieutenant-General Gabi Ashkenazi, later told Army Radio when pressed on whether Israel could attack Iran: "Israel has the right to defend itself and all options are on the table."That's good to hear. When you have a belligerent neighbor bent on destroying you, letting them get nuclear weapons is out of the question to be sure. And depending on Barack Obama to take care of the problem through a regime of weak sanctions would certainly be foolhardy.
There doesn't seem to be much of a consensus among intelligence officials over just how close Iran is to actually getting a nuclear weapon, or whether or not Iran would have the ability to deliver such a weapon to a potential target such as Israel. But that uncertainty should be enough to unnerve Israel.
As small as Israel's total land mass is, it might take only one or two crude nuclear devices to destroy the whole country. Yes, it is widely rumored that Israel has a nuclear arsenal itself, but what good would that arsenal do for Israel if an Iranian first strike destroys the country?
The bottom line is that Israel must use any and all means to make sure that Iran is not ever able to go nuclear. The survival of Israel depends upon that. Israel's leaders know that, and that's why I didn't believe the Russian president when he tired to say that Israel assured him that Israel has taken attacking Iran off the table.
With Obama in the White House, Israel cannot be sure that the USA would offer military support in the event that a conflict between Israel and Iran were to break out. While such assistance would be welcome, I don't think it would be a required part of any Israeli attack plans. Israel has one of the best military forces in the world. If necessary, Israel could go it alone and still defeat Iran.
No attack on Iran is imminent at this time. It is only an option being considered by the Israelis. All peace loving people hope that some other non violent way might be found to stop Iran's nuclear program. But time is short. Israel cannot afford to wait for long. The madmen who control Iran had better realize that they don't have much time left to stop their nuclear program. Israel will most certainly do whatever is necessary to stop them one way or the other.