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US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
Who Is Afraid of the Iranian Nuclear Bomb?
November 4, 2017
Who is Afraid of the Iranian Bomb?
I HATE self-evident truths.
Ideals may be self-evident.
Political statements are not. When I hear about a self-evident political
truth, I immediately doubt it.
The most self-evident political
truth at this moment concerns Iran. Iran is our deadly enemy. Iran wants
to destroy us. We must destroy its capabilities first.
this is self-evident, the anti-nuclear agreement signed between Iran and
the five Security Council members (plus Germany) is terrible. Just
terrible. We should have ordered the Americans long ago to bomb Iran to
smithereens. In the unlikely event that they would have disobeyed us, we
should have nuclear-bombed Iran ourselves, before their crazy fanatical
leaders have the opportunity to annihilate us first.
are self-evident truths. To my mind, all of them are utter nonsense.
There is nothing self-evident about them. Indeed, they have no logical
basis at all. They lack any geopolitical, historical or factual
NAPOLEON ONCE said that if one wants to understand
the behavior of a country, one has to look at the map.
is more important than ideology, however fanatical. Ideologies change
with time. Geography doesn't. The most fanatically ideological country
in the 20th century was the Soviet Union. It abhorred its predecessor,
Czarist Russia. It would have abhorred its successor, Putin's Russia.
But lo and behold – the Czars, Stalin and Putin conduct more or less the
same foreign policy. Karl Marx must be turning in his grave.
When the Biblical Israelite people was born, Persia was already a
civilized country. King Cyrus of Persia sent the "Jews" to Jerusalem and
founded what can be called the "Jewish people". He is remembered in
Jewish history as a great benefactor.
When the State of
Israel was founded in 1948, David Ben-Gurion saw in Iran a natural ally.
It may now sound strange, but not so long ago Iran was indeed the most
pro-Israeli country in the Middle East.
Ben-Gurion was an
out-and-out realist. Since he had no intention whatsoever to make peace
with the Arabs, a peace which would have prevented the original small
State of Israel expanding without boundaries, he looked for allies
beyond the Arab world.
Looking at the map (yes, he believed in
the map) he saw that the Muslim Arabs were surrounded by a number of
non-Arab or non-Muslim entities. There were the Maronite Christians in
Lebanon (not Muslims), the Turks (Muslims, but not Arabs), the Kurds
(Muslims but not Arabs), Iran (Muslim, but not Arab), Ethiopia (neither
Muslim nor Arab) and more.
Seeing this, Ben-Gurion devised a
grand plan: a "partnership of the periphery", an alliance of all these
entities surrounding the Arab world and which felt threatened by the
emerging pan-Arab nationalism of Gamal Abd-al-Nasser and other
ONE OF the greatest enthusiasts for
this idea was the Shah of Iran, who became Israel's most ardent friend.
The "King of Kings" was a brutal dictator, hated by most of his
people. But for many Israelis, Iran became a second home. Tehran became
a Mecca for Israeli businessmen, some of whom became very rich. Experts
of the Israeli Security Service, called Shabak (Hebrew initials of
General Security Service) trained the Shah's detested secret police,
High-ranking Israeli army commanders traveled
freely through Iran to Iraqi Kurdistan, where they trained the Kurdish
Peshmerga forces in their fight against Saddam Hussein's regime. (The
Shah, of course, did not dream of giving freedom to his own Kurdish
This paradise came to a sudden end when the Shah made
a deal with Saddam Hussein, in order to save his throne. To no avail.
Radical Shiite clerics, who were very popular, overthrew the Shah and
established the Shiite Islamic republic. Israel was out.
way, another element of the "Periphery" broke away too. In 1954
Ben-Gurion and his army chief, Moshe Dayan, hatched a plan to attack
Lebanon and establish a pro-Israeli Maronite dictator there. The then
Prime Minister, Moshe Sharet, who knew something about the Arab world,
nixed this adventure, which he considered stupid. Thirty years later
Ariel Sharon, another ignoramus, implemented the same plan, with
In 1982, the Israeli army invaded Lebanon.
It duly installed a Maronite dictator, Basheer Jumayil, who signed a
peace agreement with Israel and was soon assassinated. The Shiites, who
populate the South of Lebanon, welcomed the Israeli army
enthusiastically, believing that it would help them against the Sunni
Muslims and withdraw. I was an eye-witness: driving alone in my civilian
car from Metullah in Israel to Sidon on the Lebanon coast, I passed
several Shiite villages and could hardly extricate myself (physically)
from the embraces of the inhabitants.
However, when the Shiites
realized that the Israelis had no intention of leaving, they started a
guerrilla war against them. Thus Hezbollah was born and became one of
Israel's most effective enemies – and an ally of the Shiite regime in
BUT IS the Shiite Iranian regime such a deadly enemy of
Israel? I rather doubt it.
Indeed, when the religious fanaticism
of the new regime in Iran was at its height, a curious business
occurred. It became known as "Iran-Contra" affair. Some conservatives in
Washington DC wanted to arm rightist insurgents in leftist Nicaragua.
American laws prevented them from doing so openly, so they turned to –
who else? – Israel.
Israel sold arms to the Iranian
Ayatollahs (yes, indeed!) and gave the proceeds to our
Washington friends, who transferred them illegally to the Nicaraguan
rightist terrorists, called "Contras".
The moral of the story:
when it served their practical purposes, the Ayatollahs had no qualms at
all about making deals with Israel, the "little Satan".
needed the weapons Israel sent them because they were fighting a
war against Saddam Hussein's Iraq. It was not the first one.
For many centuries, Iraq served the Arab world as a bulwark against
Iran. Iraq has a large Shiite population, but the Iraqi Shiites were
Arabs and had no real sympathy for their fellow-Shiites in Iran. They
still have little.
Israel helped Iran in that war because it
feared Saddam Hussein. Therefore,
Israel helped to convince the US to invade Iraq. The
invasion was highly successful: Iraq was destroyed, and the historic
bulwark against Iran disappeared. So it was Israel which helped to
remove the main obstacle to Iran's hegemony over the Middle East.
Sounds crazy? Is crazy. Ben-Gurion's grand design has been stood on its
head. At present, the "periphery" of Lebanon and Iran, supported by
Turkey, is our mortal enemy, and the Sunni bloc of Saudi Arabia, the
Gulf States and Egypt are our open or half-secret allies.
hear the impatient reader shout: "Cut the bullshit, what about the
nuclear danger? What about the mad ayatollahs obtaining atomic bombs and
Well, I am
not afraid. Even if Iran obtains nuclear bombs, I shall sleep well.
Why, for God's (or Allah's) sake?
Because Israel is well provided with nuclear weapons and a
Bombing Israel would mean the annihilation of Iran, the
multi-millennial civilization, the proud heritage of innumerable
philosophers, artists, poets and scientists. (The very word "algorithm"
is derived from the name of the Persian mathematician al-Khwarizmi).
The current Iranian rulers may be fanatics (I doubt it) but they
are not suicidal. There is not a single indication in that direction. On
the contrary, they seem eminently practical people.
So why do
they clamor against Israel? Because their aim is to become the dominant
force in the Muslim world, and cursing Israel is the obvious way. As
long as Israel does not make peace with the Palestinians, the Arab and
Muslim masses everywhere hate Israel. Iran's current leaders are very
good at cursing the Little Satan.
Experts report that Islam
has recently been losing strength as the main force in Iran, while
Iranian nationalism has been gaining. The cult of Cyrus, who preceded
Muhammad by more than 1200 years, is gaining ground.
nuclear bomb was invented, no nuclear-armed country has ever been
attacked. Attacking a nuclear-armed country simply means suicide.
Even the mighty USA does not dare to
attack little North Korea, whose endeavor to obtain a
nuclear strike force is far from irrational.
So I shall sleep
soundly even if Iran goes nuclear. Though perhaps with one eye half
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