Accord nucléaire iranien: Si rien ne marche, envoyez les anciens du mossad (When all else fails, roll out the Israeli ex-security chiefs)

https://scontent-ams3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpt1/t31.0-8/11062705_10200988763718353_1517784865883534733_o.jpgCe qui se passe en Alaska nous touche tous. C’est un signal d’alarme. Et tant que je serai président, l’Amérique jouera un rôle central pour répondre à la menace du changement climatique avant qu’il ne soit trop tard. (…) C’est un défi qui définira les contours de ce siècle de manière plus spectaculaire que tout autre (…) Ce n’est plus l’heure de plaider l’ignorance. Ceux qui veulent ignorer la science sont de plus en plus seuls, ils sont sur une île qui est en train de disparaître. Barack Hussein Obama
I’m here today to say that climate change constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate threat to our national security. It will impact how our military defends our country. We need to act and we need to act now. Denying it or refusing to deal with it endangers our national security. It undermines the readiness of our forces. I know there are some folks back in Washington who refuse to admit that climate change is real. Politicians who say they care about military readiness need to care about this as well. I understand climate change did not cause the conflicts we see around the world, yet what we also know is that severe drought helped to create the instability in Nigeria that was exploited by the terrorist group Boko Haram. It’s now believed that drought and crop failures and high food prices helped fuel the early unrest in Syria, which descended into civil war in the heart of the Middle East. Barack Hussein Obama
The extremism that we see, the radical exploitation of religion which is translated into violence, has no basis in any of the real religions. There’s nothing Islamic about what ISIL/Daesh stands for, or is doing to people. (…) We’re living at a point in time where there are just more young people demanding what they see the rest of the world having than at any time in modern history. (…) And that brings us to something like climate change, which is profoundly having an impact in various parts of the world, where droughts are occurring not at a 100-year level but at a 500-year level in places that they haven’t occurred, floods of massive proportions, diminishment of water for crops and agriculture at a time where we need to be talking about sustainable food. (…) In many places we see the desert increasingly creeping into East Africa. We’re seeing herders and farmers pushed into deadly conflict as a result. We’re seeing the Himalayan glaciers receding, which will affect the water that is critical to rice and to other agriculture on both sides of the Himalayas. These are our challenges. (…) As I went around and met with people in the course of our discussions about the ISIL coalition, the truth is we – there wasn’t a leader I met with in the region who didn’t raise with me spontaneously the need to try to get peace between Israel and the Palestinians, because it was a cause of recruitment and of street anger and agitation that they felt – and I see a lot of heads nodding – they had to respond to. And people need to understand the connection of that. It has something to do with humiliation and denial and absence of dignity … John Kerry
L’Irak (…) pourrait être l’un des grands succès de cette administration. Joe Biden (10.02.10)
We think a successful, democratic Iraq can be a model for the entire region. Obama (2011)
What I just find interesting is the degree to which this issue keeps on coming up, as if this was my decision. Barack Hussein Obama (2014)
It also reminds us of the tragedy of Obama’s diplomacy, that he really did have something to contribute to U.S. foreign policy and really intended to contribute it but botched it through a peculiar, Carteresque feckless arrogance. When he took office the U.S. was overextended abroad, militarily and in the American public’s willingness to expend blood and treasure trying to bail ungrateful foreigners out of self-inflicted messes. Like many voters, Obama believed a prudent reduction in commitments and ambitions would be healthy for his nation and the world. Humility is good in one’s personal life and has its place in diplomacy. For America to elect a black president willing to be frank about the nation’s shortcomings was a powerful vindication of an open society’s capacity for honest, constructive self-examination. But inability to tell humility from feebleness not only created short-term danger for America and the world, it risks discrediting the option he so passionately championed. In his remarkable Special Providence, Walter Russell Mead identifies four principal schools in American foreign policy. “Hamiltonians” concerned about world order and “Wilsonians” crusading to impose American ideals abroad are the two familiar ones, generally described as “realists” or “idealists” (and prone to squabble over whether idealism is realistic in the long run or vice versa). But Mead adds two others of enormous and often overlooked importance. One is “Jacksonians, »often ignorant and scornful of foreigners but robust supporters of American sovereignty and decisive action when their country is challenged or insulted. And while it might seem petty to resent insults, in foreign policy in particular willingness to tolerate serious insults signals weakness that invites challenges, to such an extent that insults themselves become challenges. Their tendency to swing between scorning the world and kicking its equator imparts a certain volatility to America’s foreign relations. But Jacksonians also give it great supple strength, because they support vigorous action without tolerating hyperactivity. That brings me to the final school, smallest and least influential but still significant and useful, Mead’s “Jeffersonians.” These are idealists, like the Wilsonians. But instead of seeking to impose America’s special virtues on the world, they fear constant engagement in ugly foreign entanglements will tarnish American ideals and undermine domestic liberty. They are present in both parties, on the Democratic “left” and among Republican libertarians. And Mead argues they are another underappreciated source of supple American strength because when the U.S. gets overextended, as under the Wilsonian George W. Bush, they stand ready with an analysis and prescription for retrenchment. Obama is a “Jeffersonian,” despite his drone strikes and excessive surveillance at home and abroad. But, like Carter before him, he seems to have abdicated rather than reduced America’s positive role abroad and, indeed, to doubt it can play one. Mistaking the resulting upheaval for “tranquility” tarnishes not just his presidency but the whole notion of prudent, cautious global engagement. There lies the tragedy of his diplomacy. John Robson
The president’s demeanor is worrying a lot of people. From the immigration crisis on the Mexican border to the Islamic State rising in Mesopotamia, Barack Obama seems totally detached from the world’s convulsions. When he does interrupt his endless rounds of golf, fundraising and photo ops, it’s for some affectless, mechanical, almost forced public statement.  Regarding Ukraine, his detachment — the rote, impassive voice — borders on dissociation. His U.N. ambassador, Samantha Power, delivers an impassioned denunciation of Russia. Obama cautions that we not “get out ahead of the facts,” as if the facts of this case — Vladimir Putin’s proxies shooting down a civilian airliner — are in doubt. (…) Obama’s passivity stems from an idea. When Obama says Putin has placed himself on the wrong side of history in Ukraine, he actually believes it. He disdains realpolitik because he believes that, in the end, such primitive 19th-century notions as conquest are self-defeating. History sees to their defeat. “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice,” said Obama in June 2009 (and many times since) regarding the Green Revolution in Iran. Ultimately, injustice and aggression don’t pay. The Soviets saw their 20th-century empire dissolve. More proximally, U.S. gains in Iraq and Afghanistan were, in time, liquidated. Ozymandias lies forever buried and forgotten in desert sands. Remember when, at the beginning of the Ukraine crisis, Obama tried to construct for Putin “an offramp” from Crimea? Absurd as this idea was, I think Obama was sincere. He actually imagined that he’d be saving Putin from himself, that Crimea could only redound against Russia in the long run. If you really believe this, then there is no need for forceful, potentially risky U.S. counteractions. Which explains everything since: Obama’s pinprick sanctions; his failure to rally a craven Europe; his refusal to supply Ukraine with the weapons it has been begging for. A real U.S. president would give Kiev the weapons it needs, impose devastating sectoral sanctions on Moscow, reinstate our Central European missile-defense system and make a Reaganesque speech explaining why. Obama has done none of these things. Why should he? He’s on the right side of history. Of course, in the long run nothing lasts. But history is lived in the here and now. The Soviets had only 70 years, Hitler a mere 12. Yet it was enough to murder millions and rain ruin on entire continents. Bashar al-Assad, too, will one day go. But not before having killed at least 100,000 people. All domination must end. But after how much devastation? And if you leave it to the forces of history to repel aggression and redeem injustice, what’s the point of politics, of leadership, in the first place? The world is aflame and our leader is on the 14th green. The arc of history may indeed bend toward justice, Mr. President. But, as you say, the arc is long. The job of a leader is to shorten it, to intervene on behalf of “the fierce urgency of now.” Otherwise, why do we need a president? And why did you seek to become ours? Charles Krauthammer
De l’Irak à l’Ukraine, de la Syrie à la Libye et à l’Afghanistan en passant par Gaza, les conflits sanglants se multiplient. «Le monde est devenu un foutoir», s’est même exclamée Madeleine Albright, ancienne secrétaire d’Etat de Bill Clinton qui utilise d’habitude un langage plus châtié. Cela n’a pas de sens de faire porter toute la responsabilité de ce «foutoir» à Barack Obama et à la diplomatie américaine. Pourtant, dans chacun des points chauds du globe –Irak, Ukraine, Syrie, Libye, Afghanistan et Gaza–, la Maison Blanche a commis de grossières erreurs: en se désengageant trop vite, en ne mesurant pas suffisamment les enjeux et les risques, en menaçant sans jamais agir et en étant incapable de se donner une stratégie. Barack Obama et les Etats-Unis sont ainsi devenus aujourd’hui presque transparents sur la scène internationale, incapables de forcer un cessez-le-feu à Gaza, de faire condamner la Russie de Vladimir Poutine après la destruction en vol d’un avion civil au-dessus de l’est de l’Ukraine ou d’empêcher l’effondrement de l’Irak, de l’Afghanistan, de la Syrie et de la Libye. La diplomatie américaine a perdu au fil des mois sa crédibilité et son autorité.Il faut dire que la politique étrangère américaine cumule les désastres. (…)  Le retrait de l’ensemble des troupes américaines d’Irak a débouché sur la partition de fait du pays. Sans les 15.000 soldats américains, que les généraux voulaient maintenir sur place, les Etats-Unis n’ont eu aucun moyen de soutenir l’armée irakienne et de l’empêcher de s’effondrer face aux djihadistes. La Maison Blanche a beau se justifier en expliquant que c’était sur l’insistance du Premier ministre irakien Nouri al-Maliki, c’était surtout Barack Obama qui ne voulait plus un seul soldat américain sur le sol irakien. L’erreur a encore été plus grande en Syrie. Obama a d’abord refusé de soutenir les rebelles modérés et prédisait alors la chute de Bachar el-Assad. Quand ce dernier a gazé à mort 1.400 civils, franchissant la ligne rouge fixée par Barack Obama, ce dernier a demandé l’autorisation au Congrès d’apporter une réponse militaire… et s’en est remis à Vladimir Poutine pour obtenir du dictateur syrien qu’il renonce à son arsenal chimique. Bachar el-Assad n’est pas tombé. Les rebelles démocrates ont été balayés. Le nombre de morts dépasse les 200.000 et les djihadistes qui mènent la lutte contre le dictateur ont les mêmes méthodes sanguinaires que lui. Il y a eu aussi l’épisode libyen. Sollicité par la France et le Royaume-Uni, Barack Obama a participé à l’intervention aérienne pour renverser Mouammar Khadafi. Mais il a refusé de soutenir le nouveau gouvernement libyen et d’entraîner son armée. En conséquence de quoi, la Libye sombre dans le chaos. La réponse américaine aux printemps arabes a été désastreuse. Quand des citoyens ordinaires sont descendus dans les rues pour réclamer la démocratie, les occidentaux, à commencer par les Etats-Unis, leur ont tourné le dos. «La réponse aurait dû être du même type que le plan Marshall après la Seconde Guerre mondiale…», explique Fred Hiatt toujours dans le Washington Post. Personne ne peut savoir si les Etats-Unis avaient eu un «grand» Président, si les occidentaux auraient pu soutenir activement les démocrates arabes, auraient pu empêcher l’Irak de s’effondrer, Bachar el-Assad de garder le pouvoir et auraient fait reculer Vladimir Poutine. Mais en manifestant une telle incompétence, indécision et même indifférence face aux affaires du monde, Barack Obama l’a indéniablement rendu bien plus dangereux au cours des cinq dernières années. Eric Leser
This may be the most surprising of President Obama’s foreign-policy legacies: not just that he presided over a humanitarian and cultural disaster of epochal proportions, but that he soothed the American people into feeling no responsibility for the tragedy. Starvation in Biafra a generation ago sparked a movement. Synagogues and churches a decade ago mobilized to relieve misery in Darfur. When the Taliban in 2001 destroyed ancient statues of Buddha at Bamiyan, the world was appalled at the lost heritage. Today the Islamic State is blowing up precious cultural monuments in Palmyra, and half of all Syrians have been displaced — as if, on a proportional basis, 160 million Americans had been made homeless. More than a quarter-million have been killed. Yet the “Save Darfur” signs have not given way to “Save Syria.” One reason is that Obama — who ran for president on the promise of restoring the United States’ moral stature — has constantly reassured Americans that doing nothing is the smart and moral policy. He has argued, at times, that there was nothing the United States could do, belittling the Syrian opposition as “former doctors, farmers, pharmacists and so forth.” He has argued that we would only make things worse — “I am more mindful probably than most,” he told the New Republic in 2013, “of not only our incredible strengths and capabilities, but also our limitations.” He has implied that because we can’t solve every problem, maybe we shouldn’t solve any. “How do I weigh tens of thousands who’ve been killed in Syria versus the tens of thousands who are currently being killed in the Congo?” he asked (though at the time thousands were not being killed in Congo). (…) Perversely, the worse Syria became, the more justified the president seemed for staying aloof; steps that might have helped in 2012 seemed ineffectual by 2013, and actions that could have saved lives in 2013 would not have been up to the challenge presented by 2014. The fact that the woman who wrote the book on genocide, Samantha Power, and the woman who campaigned to bomb Sudan to save the people of Darfur, Susan Rice, could apparently in good conscience stay on as U.N. ambassador and national security adviser, respectively, lent further moral credibility to U.S. abdication. Most critically, inaction was sold not as a necessary evil but as a notable achievement: The United States at last was leading with the head, not the heart, and with modesty, not arrogance. “ (…) When Obama pulled all U.S. troops out of Iraq, critics worried there would be instability; none envisioned the emergence of a full-blown terrorist state. When he announced in August 2011 that “the time has come for President Assad to step aside,” critics worried the words might prove empty — but few imagined the extent of the catastrophe: not just the savagery of chemical weapons and “barrel bombs,” but also the Islamic State’s recruitment of thousands of foreign fighters, its spread from Libya to Afghanistan, the danger to the U.S. homeland that has alarmed U.S. intelligence officials, the refugees destabilizing Europe. Fred Hiatt
That’s always been this President’s problem: his complete inability to deal with the world at hand, as it exists right in front of his face. When the world forces Barack Obama off his script, he simply retreats to a golf course, ESPN, or most recently the remote wilds of Alaska. Nowhere was this more evident than when his habit of diplomatic detachment inconveniently washed up on the shores of the Greek island of Kos last week when a boat carrying Syrian refugees capsized. While President Jor-El embarked on a magical mystery end-of-summer climate cruise to call attention to Alaskan glacier-melt in summer, the world was suddenly captivated by the lifeless body of Aylan Kurdi lying face down in front of rescue workers.It’s fitting in a way: it is the photograph of a young boy washed up on a Turkish beach that encapsulates the consequences of what happens when a coddled President, content to do as little as possible before turning over a world spinning off its axis to his successor, is allowed to distract himself with selfies in Alaska. As thousands sought asylum in Germany, Austria, Denmark and elsewhere, the leader of the free world sought it in the most remote part of the country for another stop on his ongoing Retirepallooza Tour of Meaningless Firsts. While Obama was posing for glorious-leader-make-wonderful-country photos in front of mountains, John Kerry, in one of many ongoing reminders of just how right this country got it in 2004, used the occasion not to address this very real catastrophe splashed all over social media and newspapers, but to hedge it against an imaginary possible future migrant crisis due to global warming. Addressing the world as it exists now means confronting more photos of his dinner-date with Bashar al-Assad (“a real reformer” – Hillary Clinton, 2011) and excusing away the faulty campaign promises of a President content to give Iraq up to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. It wasn’t climate change that caused refugees, including Aylan Kurdi and several others, to wash up on a Turkish beach. The message is clear — Obama and his State Department are not going to be shaken off their climate paranoia narrative. When Obama vehemently denied he ever called for a red line of action in Syria, he blamed “The world” and he’s content to let “the world” handle it now in any attempt to repudiate any further responsibility. What do 300,000 refugees and the whole of Europe matter when there is a glacier in the Arctic that needs staring at. As Obama occupies himself with uncertain visions of the how the world will be in the distant future, he ignores it as it exists in the present day at our peril for the conflicts we face now. There will be a price to pay for this and it has nothing to do with sea levels rising 75 years from now. ISIS (that is, Obama’s JV Squad) is threatening to use the crisis of thousands of faceless and unnamed refugees as a gateway to European and western countries. There are very real security questions about who many of these refugees are as well as their intentions for fleeing. According to reports in the Daily Mail & others there has been for some time. Barack Obama maintains that the United States cannot intervene in every crisis in every part of the world and has the record of complete disengagement to prove he means it. But this is a conflict that has a very real chance of infiltrating our cities. This is a part of the world that, no matter how much we pull away from it, will one way or another find a way to pull us back in.(..) Our media collectively demands accountability for these conflicts from every single person…except the one person who has any real power to stop or mitigate it. This has always been the anecdote in Obama’s foreign policy: 1) show up 2) demand the world follow him 3) world leaders balk at his demands 4) he shrugs his shoulders and goes and plays with his selfie stick somewhere. If Obama really feels like going “all-out,” sometimes there will be an additional step 5 involving Twitter pictures of the State Department’s junior-hipster mall brigade flashing grins, thumbs-up, and razor-edged hashtags (fashioned by America’s sharpest military scientists working in the depths of DARPA to help win The Bloody War Of Memes). (…) The media demands we not ignore those fleeing from radical Islamic tyranny,  yet refuses to hold this administration accountable for turning its eyes away from comments made by the mullahs of Iran, so desperate are they to write a narrative about how an unenforceable deal would, in the cosmically perfect words of Rep. Patrick Murphy, “bring peace in our time.”  Americans have been abandoned overseas in Iran, their captivity used as a leverage against a reluctant U.S. Congress. The fight for democracy and the fight to redeem captive Americans or defend refugees in Syria and Iraq isn’t as easy as (in the words of the AP) staring down a melting glacier. The name of Scott Darden, currently being held captive by Houthi rebels in Yemen, takes a backseat to the name of a mountain in Alaska. The beautiful narrative of Obama’s presidency is so much more interesting, and so much easier to romanticize, than the world he’s going to leave behind. (…) And the results of that indifference have just washed up on shore. Steven Miller
When Steven Cohen, a professor at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, conducted a poll of American Jews, including those who, like myself, are not religious, he found that an astounding 63% approved of the nuclear deal, a figure impressively higher right now than American opinion on the subject generally. In other words, with the single exception of J Street, all the major Jewish organizations that are lobbying against the deal and claiming to represent American Jews and Jewish opinion don’t.  (…) But what about Israel, where support among key figures for deep-sixing the nuclear deal is self-evident? Again, just one small problem: almost any major Israeli figure with a military or intelligence background who is retired or out of government and can speak freely on the matter seems to have come out in favor of the agreement. (The same can be said, by the way, for similar figures in this country, as well as Gary Samore, a former Obama administration White House Coordinator for Arms Control and Weapons of Mass Destruction and until recently head of United Against Nuclear Iran, a Sheldon Adelson-funded group whose job is to knee-cap such an agreement. He stepped down from that post recently to support the nuclear deal.) In Israel, a list as long as your arm of retired intelligence chiefs, generals and admirals, officials of all sorts, even nuclear scientists, have publicly stepped forward to support the agreement, written an open letter to Netanyahu on the subject, and otherwise spoken out, including one ex-head of the Mossad, Israel’s intelligence service, appointed to his position by none other than Netanyahu. In other words, the well-financed fast and furious campaign here against the nuclear deal (which has left just about every Republican senator, representative, and presidential candidate in full froth) and the near hysteria churned up on the subject has created a reality that bears remarkably little relationship to actual reality. David Bromwich
There’s a deep crack emerging in the veneer of wall-to-wall support offered by Israel’s political leadership to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his war against the Iran nuclear agreement. The crack has a name you might recognize: the Israeli security establishment. (…) As unanimous as the politicians are in backing the prime minister, the generals and spymasters are nearly as unanimous in questioning him. Generals publicly backing Netanyahu can be counted on — well — one finger. Many of the security insiders say the deal signed in Vienna on July 14 isn’t as bad as Netanyahu claims. Some call it good for Israel. Others say it’s bad, but it’s a done deal and Israel should make the best of it. Either way, they agree that Israel should work with the Obama administration to plot implementation, rather than mobilize Congress against the White House. All agree that undermining Israel’s alliance with America is a far greater existential threat than anything Iran does.(…)  They include a former chief of military intelligence, Amos Yadlin , who now heads Israel’s main defense think tank; a former chief of arms technology, Yitzhak Ben-Yisrael , who now chairs both The Israel Space Agency and the science ministry’s research and development council; a former chief of military operations, Israel Ziv ; a near-legendary architect of Israeli military intelligence, Dov Tamari ; a former director of the Shin Bet domestic security service, Ami Ayalon , and a former director of the Mossad intelligence agency, Efraim Halevy . And there are others. The list would be longer if we included security figures who spoke in favor of the Lausanne framework agreement in April, which was the basis for this deal, but haven’t addressed the new agreement. And we’re not including anyone who retired with a rank below brigadier general. We’re just discussing the architects of Israeli defense. The roster should also include a onetime chief of military intelligence, Israel Defense Forces chief of staff and prime minister named Ehud Barak. (…) Barak called the nuclear deal a “bad deal” that legitimizes Iran as a nuclear threshold state. He predicted that Iran would have a nuclear weapon within a decade. But, he said, Israel “can live with whatever happens there. We are the strongest state in the Middle East, militarily, strategically, economically — and diplomatically, if we’re not foolish.” Again contradicting Netanyahu, Barak said: “The most important thing we need to do right now is restore working relations with the White House. That’s the only place where we can formulate what constitutes a violation, what’s a smoking gun and how to respond.” (…)  That’s the generals’ central theme: Don’t panic. “We need to be calm,” said Yadlin, the former military intelligence chief, in a Ynet online interview . “The agreement isn’t good, but Israel can deal with it.” Instead of “blowing off steam,” he said, Israel should be talking with the United States to prepare responses to violations. By contrast, Ben-Yisrael, who has twice won the Israel Prize for contributions to Israel’s weapons technology, told Walla! News that the Vienna agreement is “not bad at all, perhaps even good for Israel.” True, Iran still calls for Israel’s destruction. But, he said, from the nuclear perspective — which is what the negotiations were about — “it prevents a nuclear bomb for 15 years, which is not bad at all.” Halevy, the former Mossad director, elaborated on Ben-Yisrael’s point in a scathing Ynet op-ed. From the start, Israel “maintained that the Iranian threat is a unique, existential threat.” It wanted the international community to address the threat, and it did. “That was the only goal of the biting sanctions against Iran,” he wrote. Now, he stated, the government tries “to change the rules of the game and include additional demands from Iran in the agreement, like recognizing Israel and halting support for terror.” By threatening to block an agreement that addresses Israel’s “existential-cardinal” goal because it doesn’t address other, nonexistential issues, Halevy wrote, Netanyahu raises the suspicion that he doesn’t want a deal at all. (…) Last January, the Mossad’s director, Tamir Pardo, told a group of senators that imposing new sanctions on Iran, something Netanyahu favored, would undermine the nuclear talks. J.J. Goldberg
Are the quoted members of this community all experts on the Iranian nuclear negotiations, or on nuclear issues more generally speaking? The answer is no. Some are and some are not. And are there not other comparable figures making a very different case, indeed strongly arguing against the Iran deal? Of course there are. And finally, are ex-security establishment figures as a group necessarily the most authoritative voices on this particular topic in the Israeli domestic debate? Again, the answer is no. There are Iran experts, nuclear experts, and Iran nuclear experts, who have been following every detail for years – these individuals have vastly more relevant credentials to discuss the ins and outs and implications of the Iran deal than the ex-head of the Shin Bet. (…) Some of the figures – those that are authoritative – have been quoted as opposing the government’s position on the deal when they are actually trying to convey a more nuanced message than the one being framed by the media. Their message seems tailored primarily for internal consumption – to say to the Israeli public: yes, this deal is bad, but it is not a disaster. We are strong and will be able to deal with the adverse implications. Moreover, they say, Israel’s strategic ties with the US are of paramount importance and cannot be jeopardized by trying to influence an internal American debate. These arguments are quite valid, but they are not arguments in favor of the deal. They are arguments saying that we in Israel have no choice but to try to make the best of a bad situation over which we have no direct control. Some say that they favor the deal because it keeps Iran from nuclear weapons for 10 or 15 years. But does it? That’s exactly the essence of the very serious debate going on these days in Congress! The holes in the deal make that statement precarious at best. Moreover, what happens after 15 years? Unfortunately, Israeli ex-security establishment figures are no less prone than some Americans to focusing on short-term rather than long-term solutions. The current deal was always meant to be comprehensive and final, and yet it is nothing of the sort. This is an issue with serious ramifications for global security down the line, and a simplistic “well we’ve delayed the disaster…maybe”, especially when dealing with nuclear capabilities, is the height of recklessness.(…) what is at stake is not whether and how Israel makes the best of a bad situation, but rather the merits of the deal – most importantly, whether it will stop Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. (…) Unfortunately, the US administration is trying to advance two messages simultaneously: that this is a good deal, and that it is better than the alternative. But it is either one or the other. If it is a good deal, focus on that. And if the debate is actually over alternatives, then explain why the administration has, from the start, cut off any discussion of alternatives by placing all critics who suggested them (regardless of where they live) in the impossible situation of not being allowed to say anything before the deal is revealed, nor after. But of course, it is with regard to the question of alternatives that the Israeli voices now being quoted are most useful to proponents of the deal. Israel Ziv, one of the retired generals mentioned in the Forward, demonstrates how that works when he argues that the deal is better than the alternatives, like a military strike. But he also notes that “there is no one in Israel who thinks the nuclear agreement is a good agreement,” even if he thinks that that should not be the focus of discussion. Go figure. The recent attempt to say to Americans that they should listen to one set of Israelis rather than another is one more attempt to divert attention from what should be the only focus of attention in the current debate over the nuclear deal: the serious flaws in this deal that will legitimize Iran’s dangerous nuclear threshold status, and that could ultimately pave the way to Iran becoming a nuclear state. That scenario would be irreversible, and the Iranians know it. And when looking at this through Iranian eyes, 15 years is no time at all. Emily Landau
J.J. Goldberg at the Forward has been running a campaign to persuade Americans that Israel’s intelligence community is at odds with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the Iran deal. Not only the preponderance of retired professionals but also currently serving ones, dissent from Netanyahu’s read of the deal. Netanyahu can’t silence the former, but he’s given a “gag order” to the latter — to no avail. Military intelligence has even produced a “surprising,” “game-changing” assessment that undermines him completely, according to which the “upsides [of the deal] aren’t perfect,” but “the downsides aren’t unmanageable… The disadvantages are not too calamitous for anyone to cope with them.” Military intelligence sees “an imperfect but real opening in Iran. It believes that opportunities are being lost.” Netanyahu’s own “diagnosis doesn’t match his own intelligence.” It’s all polemical and politicized nonsense. A real expert, Emily Landau (at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv) (…) points out that Iranian politics and nuclear issues are well beyond the expertise of most of them. (…). And most of those who think that Israel should back off a fight over the deal still think it’s a bad one. They just argue that it’s inevitable anyway, so why provoke Barack Obama? This isn’t support for the deal, it’s resigned acquiescence. (…)  Yes, the intelligence assessment is that Iran won’t be able to build a bomb under the terms of the agreement. (That is, if Iran doesn’t cheat—the assessment says the mechanisms for inspection are flawed.) Iran might even show short-term restraint over support for terror, to consolidate its gains from sanctions relief. But the estimate also holds that when the agreement expires, Iran will be only weeks away from a nuclear breakout. In the meantime, Iran gains undeserved legitimacy from the deal, which provokes Arab states to stock up on conventional weapons and accelerate their own nuclear programs. Some of these programs could be militarized over time. The bottom line of the assessment, as reported in the press, is that the risks of the deal outweigh the opportunities. (This formula appears in more than one press report. Goldberg omits it.) (…)  Debates in Israel’s intel community not only occur; they’re encouraged (there’s even an officer in military intelligence who’s a designated “devil’s advocate”). Likewise, it’s vital for Israeli planners to think about the day after a done deal on Iran, and how Israel can make the most of it. But that’s all it is. Goldberg’s latest job is a conspiracy theory for the gullible. You don’t have to be an intel officer to know that it’s a red herring. Martin Kremer

C’est le réchauffement climatique, imbécile !

A l’heure où après le fiasco irakien et syrien et à présent, entre faux passeports et fausses conversions, le chaos des réfugiés en Europe …

Se font chaque jour un peu plus sentir les conséquences catastrophiques de l’inaction d’un Chef du Monde libre …

Trop occupé, obsédé qu’il est par le changement à tout prix et sa place dans l’Histoire et protégé (jusqu’à invoquer le réchauffement climatique !) par une presse aux ordres, à se faire des selfies en Alaska ou à débaptiser des montagnes …

 Devinez qui l’Administration Obama est allée chercher pour faire passer un accord nucléaire iranien qui se révèle lui aussi chaque jour un peu plus catastrophique ?

Roll out the ex-security chiefs

August 3, 2015

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