US Iran Policy in 'Lockstep' with Israel?: President Obama Risks Becoming a Major-League War Criminal
It’s a relief to know that President Obama’s “preferred” solution to dealing with disagreements with Iran is diplomacy, as he said yesterday in an interview on NBC TV, but at the same time, it’s profoundly disturbing that he is simultaneously saying that, as an AP report on the interview put it: he would “not take options off the table to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons.”
Equally disturbing are the president’s mutually contradictory statements that, on the one hand, he feels that “Any kind of additional military activity inside the Gulf is disruptive and has a big effect on us,” and that on the other, he will “make sure that we work in lockstep” with Israel in dealing with Iran and its nuclear program.
Lockstep? With Israel?
Didn’t the US just send Gen.Martin Dempsey, chairman of the US Military’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, to Israel to tell that country’s leaders that the US does not want Israel to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities. And wasn’t Israel also told that the US would not support it in any attack on Iran, at least if the US was not warned well in advance? Israel, of course, is continuing to threaten to attack Iran -- using the very planes and bombs that the US provides it with. So how exactly is opposing an attack by Israel and having Israel continuously threatening to attack in any way to be construed as working in “lockstep”?
And anyhow, what kind of a country moves in “lockstep” with any other country, except for a puppet regime?
The US does not have a treaty with Israel requiring the US to go to war when Israel goes to war. It doesn’t even have a treaty to go to Israel’s defense if Israel is attacked. There is a treaty like that with Taiwan, but not with Israel. US interests are clearly not congruent with Israeli interests, especially where Iran is concerned (just ask any veteran of the USS Liberty about how congruent US and Israeli policy really is).
There were other problems with the president’s interview on television yesterday too. The biggest one is that his own military chief, Leon Panetta, has stated that the US does not have evidence that the Iranians are building a bomb.
As well, there have been many statements from US intelligence and military sources making it clear that no attack on Iran’s widely dispersed and increasingly hidden and hardened nuclear fuel processing operations could successfully derail any future effort to build a bomb. In fact, many have said that such an attack would increase the likelihood that the Iranians would work to obtain nuclear weapons, either by making them on their own, or by buying them -- for example from Pakistan or North Korea.
The president’s position as stated yesterday is a hodgepodge of confusion and self-contradiction.