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November 11, 2009

Israel's future

Alan Hart

Alan HartWhat is it, really, that most endangers Israel's future? A nuclear armed Iran? No.

For the sake of discussion, let’s assume that some in Iran’s current leadership do want their country to possess nuclear weapons and that they do succeed in developing them. What then?

Is it conceivable that Iran would launch a first strike on Israel?

The answer has to be no. Absolutely not! An Iranian first strike would bring retaliation that would not end until Iran had been annihilated, wiped from the face of the earth.

One needs only a sound mind to understand that no Iranian leadership will ever be stupid enough to provoke such an outcome.

Why then are Israel’s military and political hawks (and their neo-con associates in America) so determined, apparently, to do whatever is necessary to stop Iran developing nuclear weapons?

Is it because they are deluded, perhaps to the point of clinical madness? No. The real problem for Israel’s leaders is that Iran’s possession of a nuclear bomb or two or several would greatly restrict their freedom to impose Zionism’s will on the region by brute force of all kinds.

In passing it’s worth noting the latest comments of Mohamed ElBaradie, the outgoing chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency. In an interview with the Austrian Die Presse published on 18 October, he said, “The threat of Iran’s nuclear program is exaggerated.” He added: “Bombing Iran is not the solution. An Israeli attack would turn the entire region into a fireball.” (It might also bring about, I add, the complete collapse of the global economy).

So what about other military dangers to Israel’s future?

There are none. And that’s not simply because the Zionist state is the military superpower of the region. There is not now, and there never has been, an Arab military threat to Israel’s existence.

As I document in detail in Zionism: The Real Enemy of the Jews, the Arab regimes never had any intention of fighting Israel to liberate Palestine. And when Eygpt was taken out of the military equation - a process started by Henry Kissinger and completed by President Carter - the Arabs could not fight even if they wanted to.

So what is it, really, that most endangers Israel’s future?

The answer was put into words by Yehoshafat Harkabi, the longest serving Israeli Director of Military Intelligence. In his seminal book, Israel’s Fateful Hour, published in 1986, he wrote about the “pressing need for (Israeli) self-criticism”. He went on (my emphasis added):

“Certainly Israel is not guilty of everything that has gone wrong in the occupied lands. But self-criticism is imperative in order to counter-balance the tendencies to self-righteousness and self-pity that stem from basic Jewish attitudes, from the historical experience of persecution, and from the ethos fostered by Menachem Begin. No factor endangers Israel’s future more than self-righteousness, which blinds us to reality, prevents a complex understanding of the situation, and legitimizes extreme behaviour.”

If Harkabi was alive today, I imagine the self-righteousness on display in Israel’s rubbishing and rejection of the Goldstone Report with its accusation of Israeli (and Hamas) war crimes would make him vomit.

Does anybody know of a cure for self-righteousness?

Alan Hart is an author, former Middle East Chief Correspondent for Independent Television News, and former BBC Panorama presenter specialising in the Middle East.

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