Saturday, June 20, 2009
Israel versus Iran
Where do we come in?
The key assumptions I have made, which are based on precedents and statements by the respective parties, are: 1) That the Israelis will attack Iran when they are convinced that there is no other way; and 2) That Iran will respond to this attack by their own attacks on Israel and the US, using terrorist-type assaults; and, 3) That the US will respond to the Iranian attacks.
If (1) is not true, then neither will (2) or (3) be true. If (1) is true, then (2) may or may not be true, depending on the Iranian response. If (2) is not true for the US, it is very problematical whether (3) would be true. But, if (1) and (2) are true, I assert that (3) will be true also.
So, engagement is not inevitable. It depends on the Israelis to begin with. Would you care to make a bet that they will not attack Iran? Given that they do attack, would you make a bet that Iran will not attack US assets in response? Finally, if Iran does attack US assets, would you make a bet that we will not respond with our own attacks? I will gladly take those bets.
The other side scenario is that the US decides to join the Israeli attack, reasoning that we will become involved anyway, so why not do a good job in neutralizing the nuclear threat from Iran? Further, it is possible that Israel does not succeed in their attack, and it leaves them very short of trained pilots and aircraft, and thus more vulnerable to the Iranian, and perhaps Syrian responses. We end up being drawn into the fight anyway since I believe we would come to Israel's defense. We end up with real damage to our people in both scenarios, and end up attacking Iran.