The U.S. Can Write Off the Middle East
- Martin Kramer
- We have become used to the notion that U.S. preeminence in the world and the Middle East is a constant. But it isn't so. The simple truth is that Israel cannot rely on the U.S. to do the right thing.
- More than six years ago, before Obama even declared his candidacy, I told the Conference of Presidents that "America's era in the Middle East will end one day," and that "it is possible that in twenty years' time, America will be less interested and engaged in the Middle East. What is our Plan B then?"
- Obama accelerated that timetable, but the long-term trend has been clear for years.
- Israel and the U.S. have had an extraordinary run. But history stands still for no people. However enamored we are of the status quo, Israel needs a Plan B.
- The State of Israel must be agile enough to survive a power outage of any ally. Israel's future depends upon its ability to read the changing map of the world, to register the ebb and flow of global power, and to adapt as necessary.
- Let us pray for the perpetuation of America's power to do good in the world. Let us prepare for something less.
The writer, President of Shalem College in Jerusalem, is former director of the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies at Tel Aviv University.
French President Assures Israel France Will Stand Firm on Iran Deal
- Noam Dvir
French President Francois Hollande arrived in Israel for a three-day visit. In a joint press conference with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Hollande assured Israel that France would continue to oppose an easing of economic sanctions against Iran until it was convinced Tehran had given up any pursuit of nuclear weapons.
Hollande reaffirmed France's conditions for an interim deal: put all Iranian nuclear installations under international surveillance, suspend 20% uranium enrichment, reduce existing enriched uranium stocks and stop construction of a heavy water plant at Arak. "These are the points that are essential to us to underpin a deal," Hollande said.
Mossad working with Saudis on plans for attack on Iran
The Mossad is working with Saudi officials on contingency plans for a potential attack on Iran in the event that Tehran's nuclear program is not sufficiently curbed in the deal that may be concluded between Iran and world powers in Geneva this week, The Sunday Times reported.
Both Jerusalem and Riyadh have expressed displeasure at the deal being formulated between Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers that they see as doing little to stop Tehran's progress toward a nuclear weapon.
According to the Times, Riyadh has already given its consent for Israel to use Saudi airspace for a potential attack on Iran.
The paper quoted a diplomatic source as saying the Saudis were willing to assist an Israeli attack by cooperating on the use of drones, rescue helicopters and tanker planes.
Israel Willing to Strike Iran on Its Own - John Reed
In an interview with the Financial Times, Israel's outgoing national security advisor Yaakov Amidror, who stepped down last month, said Israel could halt Iran's nuclear weapons capability "for a very long time," and added its air force had been conducting "very long-range flights...all around the world" as part of preparations for a possible military confrontation with Iran. "We are not the United States of America, of course, and...they have more capabilities than us," he said. "But we have enough to stop the Iranians for a very long time."
"We are not bluffing," Amidror said. "We are very serious - preparing ourselves for the possibility that Israel will have to defend itself by itself." "It is not just a threat to Israel, it is a threat to the whole of the Middle East and, towards the end of this decade, to the world," Amidror said. "But we cannot count on others to do the job if the others don't want to do the job."