View Full Version : Israel may have Iran in its sights...

10-22-2004, 01:20 PM
By Laura King Times Staff Writer

JERUSALEM Increasingly concerned about Iran's nuclear program, Israel is weighing its options and has not ruled out a military strike to prevent the Islamic Republic from gaining the capability to build atomic weapons, according to policymakers, military officials, analysts and diplomats.

Israel would much prefer a diplomatic agreement to shut down Iran's uranium enrichment program, but if it concluded that Tehran was approaching a "point of no return," it would not be deterred by the difficulty of a military operation, the prospect of retaliation or the international reaction, officials and analysts said.

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon (news - web sites) and his top aides have been asserting for months that a nuclear-armed Iran would pose a clear threat to Israel's existence. They have repeatedly threatened, in elliptical but unmistakable terms, to use force if diplomacy and the threat of sanctions fail.

Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz told the Yediot Aharonot newspaper last month that "all options" were being weighed to prevent Iran from achieving nuclear weapons capability. The army chief of staff, Moshe Yaalon, declared: "We will not rely on others."

Iran presents "a combination of factors that rise to the highest level of Israeli threat perception," said analyst Gerald Steinberg of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies.

"Nuclear weapons in a country with a fundamentalist regime, a government with which we have no diplomatic contact, a known sponsor of terrorist groups like Hezbollah and which wants to wipe Israel off the map that makes stable deterrence extremely difficult, if not impossible," Steinberg said.

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10-22-2004, 01:22 PM
Again, Israel is our greatest ally in the Middle East. I'm very glad that they're doing this. Israel is a country that knows it must protect itself. The almost openly anti-semitic UN can't be counted on.

10-22-2004, 11:06 PM
I'm glad to see that we're so strongly behind Israel, and they'r strongly behind our efforts. I think Israel ses this war for what it really is....a religious war! Too bad much of the rest of the world doesn't see the truth as it is. All I have to say is....we better stick with God's chosen people on this one!

10-23-2004, 12:54 AM
Patrick, why do you see it as a religious war? At least from our side?

10-23-2004, 11:41 PM
Good's only a religious war from their perspective, not ours. They're the one's fighting against us to gain reward from Allah. We really have no religious motives in this war. At the same time though, we need to realize as a nation that we're fighting a group of people that do have religion palying a big part in their motives.....sure, they're terrorists, but there's more behind it than just that. They see us as infidels, and supposedly believe Allah will reward them for destroying us. We're really fighting an ideology just as much as we're fighting terror.

10-24-2004, 07:44 AM
Patrick, we have been making progress in that area. Especially with friendly countries such as Jordan. Jordan's king has declared that any man seeking to become a Mullah (Islamic cleric/scholar) must first have a degree in some non-religious field. This will hopefully lead to a more liberal/educated class of Mullahs.

I do think Jordan's solution is interesting. We'll see how that plays out.

10-24-2004, 11:16 PM
Maybe that's why Jordan isn't as militant as other Middle Eastern Nations.

10-25-2004, 06:25 AM
Not their government, but they also produce their fair share of terrorists. As I recall, they found/are finding quite a few Jordanian passports among terrorist dead and wounded over there.