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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Israel's Nudging the USA Couldn't Hurt

Nadene Goldfoot
From the city of Ashkelon, Israel comes the news via New York Times News Service that Netanyahu hasn't stopped the pressure he has put on the USA that Israel might have to go it alone in stopping Iran's ability to manufacture atomic weapons to be used on Israel and the USA.  Panetta, the USA Defense Secretary, visited Israel Wednesday, meeting in Netanyahu's Knesset office in Jerusalem,  and said that he remains hopeful that Israel won't attack soon and may let the USA take the lead in any future military strike.

Negotiations between the two have intensified over the past month since Netanyahu had mentioned that sanctions against Iran were useless.  "Right now the Iranian regime believes that the international community does not have the will to stop its nuclear program," he commented.  "This must change and it must change quickly because time to resolve this issue peacefully is running out."   Israel has spoken of the window of opportunity and if that passes, it would be useless to try to stop it.

Congress just passed a new round of Iran sanctions legislation which is reported to be the strongest measure yet.  It aims to now punish banks, shippers, insurers and others who help Iran sell its oil.  This was under negotiations nearly up until the vote.  The House had passed 410-11, the Iran Threat Reduction Act last December.  A version of that passed the Senate in May.  Before the summer started, the two houses got together for the single updated version which passed yesterday unanimously in the Senate and passed in the House 421-6.  Perhaps this is why Panetta is saying to give sanctions a chance and why Netanyahu has felt that up till now the sanctions were doing nothing to stop Iran.  They hadn't been strong enough to do a whit.

Is it any wonder that  Mitt Romney decided to visit Israel in his aim to gather votes?  Thomas Friedman thought it useless today in his long essay, and thought he should have just gone to Vegas instead.  To Friedman, they could have put up a plastic Wailing Wall in the dining room and Romney wouldn't know the difference, I suppose.  Friedman is so frustrated that he is still presenting old old ideas in his extremely long essay like beating Israel to death with the 2 state solution with no alternatives other than to "test, test  and have the US keep testing creative ideas for a two-state solution."  Mr. Friedman, that's been going on since 1948. He even calls the Jewish people of Judea and Samaria "settlers" and still is thinking of "occupation", whereas Israel has already stated that their communities are legal according to international law.   He's so behind his reading of others' opinions that he has the audacity to praise Jimmy Carter "who is one of several who have done the most to make Israel more secure and accepted in the region and told blunt truths to every Israeli or Arab leader."  I would say Jimmy has done just the opposite with his own book on the subject.  Sorry, Friedman, but your vocabulary belies your stodgy beliefs of supporting Israel.

Resource:  Oregonian Newspaper, 8/2/12 page A5, Nuclear Threat-US, Israel intensify talks on Iran, page B5-why not in Vegas?  Better to skip the trip to Israel by Thomas Friedman, commentary page.

1 comment:

Nadene Goldfoot said...

Hi Nadine-you are moderate,i must say, in your criticism of T
friedman's column today. I thought it was on the verge of
anti-semitic-making money the only thing of value about Israel. It was
misanthropic,snarky and pathetically lacking in the reality of
Israel's position, This was a mean-spirited and totally
pro-palestinian leftist position ( like the radical professors in our
universities. Baker,Kissinger and Carter good for Israel? Nothing
about Iran
Grovel for Jewish votes.? "They " can make enough trouble on their
own? This is a nasty guy-- a pair with Nicholas Kristoff.
Lorraine W.