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Daybreak: U.S. Bombs Could Get to Iran Facility

Plus Israeli Jews oppose attack and support Obama, and more in the news

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An anti-aircraft gun at the Natanz nuclear site.(Hasan Sarbakhshian/AP/WP)

• U.S. BUSTER-BUNKERS COULD PROBABLY PENETRATE the underground, fortified Iranian nuclear facility called Fordow, which is likely mostly impervious to Israeli bombs. Understanding this is crucial to understanding the U.S.-Israeli stand-off right now. [WP]

• FORMER MOSSAD CHIEF AMOS YADLIN spells it out: Israel must trust that the United States would strike if it came down to it, or else Israel will now. [NYT]

• IS THERE DAYLIGHT BETWEEN ISRAELI JEWS AND U.S. JEWS? Most Israeli Jews oppose a unilateral Israeli strike against Iran and support President Obama over Republican contenders, according to a new poll. [JPost]

• NO INTIFADA IS FORMALLY PLANNED, said the Palestinian Authority, which added that protests might still erupt in the coming months. [JPost]

• POINTING TO NORTH KOREA, which agreed to temporarily halt its nuclear weapons program in exchange for food, one Israeli official suggested starving Iran into compliance. How about no. [Ynet]

• ISRAEL QUIETLY LEGALIZED SHVUT RACHEL, a small, old hilltop-style settlement outpost in the West Bank. [AP/Vos Iz Neias?]

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Hershel (Heshy) Ginsburg says:

“FORMER MOSSAD CHIEF AMOS YADLIN spells it out: Israel must trust that the United States would strike if it came down to it, or else Israel will now”

For the benefit of those who don’t read Yadlin’s full piece (I recommend reading in full; MT’s one liner does not do it justice).

a) Yadlin was not head of the Mossad but rather was Commander of Military Intelligence.

b) Yadlin also was one of the pilots who bombed the Iraqi reactor in 1981. (Another one was Ilan Ramon, the Israeli astronaut who died in the space shuttle Columbia disaster).

c) Yadlin notes that the assumption in 1981 was the attack would delay Iraqi nukes for only a few years. It was the follow-up that was responsible for it lasting far longer.

What Yadlin doesn’t mention is that support in the Israeli military and intelligence establishment for bombing the reactor was not unanimous. A number of the most senior commanders were against it. Shimon Peres (opposition leader at the time) opposed it. Although the working assumption was that the attack would delay Iraq for only ~3 years, some thought that the delay would last only a year and communicated that point to Begin.

d) More than simple “trust” the central question is, should Israel pass up its last chance to stop the Iranians within the limits of Israel’s ability to project force, believing that Obama will follow thru with the use of force if the Iranians don’t undo their nuclear program?

Or, even after giving Israel “ironclad promises”, could Obama find a way to weasel out of attacking Iran? Is massively attacking Iran in his character? Is it in Obama’s character to double-cross Israel and throw it under the bus? Is his word worth enough to entrust Israel’s future to it?

J’lem / Efrata


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Daybreak: U.S. Bombs Could Get to Iran Facility

Plus Israeli Jews oppose attack and support Obama, and more in the news

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