Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Israel and the pact with Iran

Israel and the pact with Iran
Netanyahu is not the cause but the product of a country accustomed to bad decisions without suffering the consequences. Naive to accuse the signatories to the nuclear deal, he has insulted his benefactor, USA, and its European allies. With the resumption of meetings of the Congress after the summer recess, President Obama already has enough votes to implement the nuclear deal signed with Iran on 14 July. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who led the campaign to stop the deal, sometimes ends up melodramáticos- has been defeated, at least for now. But you need to know the basics of this campaign, because it has implications not only for the US but for Europe, which are not limited to the Iranian nuclear issue.

It is convenient to explain the Israeli position as a combination of two factors: that Iran is a particularly dangerous threat to Israel, and that is the personal style of Netanyahu, a neo-conservative politician, prone to exaggeration and alarmism over hardliners. But this is a hackneyed and insufficient explanation, showing the inability to understand the direction taken by Israel and is a lousy model which guided in the future.

No doubt that Israel and Iran are adversaries: Iran has practiced terror against Israel and its leadership rhetoric is often unacceptable. But that does not mean that threatens its existence, as so often is ensured. Israel has enormous military superiority over Iran and the groups it sponsors, and although little is said about it-is Israel, not Iran, which has a highly developed nuclear arsenal. In addition, the role of Iran in the region was not the goal of nuclear pact. Israel was the one that insisted that the negotiations spoke exclusively nuclear program and rejected any dialogue initiative on broader regional issues or on specific topics such as Syria, EI, Lebanon and Yemen. So, largely, his criticism is a rejection of the agreement (unrecognized) own strategy that had demanded that the P5 + 1.

On the details of the agreement, Netanyahu's arguments ring hollow. After more than twenty years ensuring that the Iranian bomb is a matter of months, now it despises an agreement establishing more prohibitions, restrictions and monitoring mechanisms than ever, for 15 years, and imposes limitations and permanent inspections the NPT after that deadline.

While the international community is often not taken into account, in Israel, while politicians and commentators have spoken out against the agreement, scientists and security experts have been very supporters. The main Israeli nuclear expert, Uzi Even -old lieutenant colonel in the IDF, a physics professor and former chief scientist of the team Dimona- reactor, after a detailed analysis ensures that "the deal closes all roads I know for the bomb "; former Mossad chief Efraim Halevy says Iran has accepted "the supervisory regime more invasive the world" and that the agreement "includes crucial for Israel's security elements." Other former officials of the security services coincide, and, according to several media reports, the current intelligence services of the army and the Mossad have valued very positively treated. To understand the rejection of Netanyahu must assess the regional situation of Israel, accustomed to a degree of regional hegemony and freedom of military action especially noteworthy. It is normal that the Israelis do not want to give up that power. His position has been possible thanks to the importance of the US in the region, forcing other countries to choose between being allies and therefore get along with Israel, or face and end up isolated or worse.

The alternative offered Jerusalem was not a diplomatic solution, but a change of regime
That equation could not be maintained indefinitely, but in a region and a world changing at full speed, a model that Israel needs the rule by force instead of US diplomacy and detente clings. Israel has insisted on having a static Arab world and unable to press on the Palestinian issue, by a sanctioned Iran; the alternative proposed was not a diplomatic solution, but a change of regime.

The arguments of the Israeli diatribes against nuclear pact seem so unrealistic that they are. The fault is not just Netanyahu. The prime minister is not the cause but the result of an Israel so accustomed to impunity, the moral risk of making bad decisions without suffering consequences, which increasingly acts more extreme and harmful to its allies and to form their own interests. Naive to accuse the signatories to the nuclear deal, Israel has not only insulted his benefactor, the White House, but also its main European allies.

The best way to understand the unjustified indignation of Israel is to look at your reaction when its treatment of Palestinians in the occupied territories is critical. Here again it lack a true political opposition to Netanyahu. The two main opposition leaders Yitzhak Herzog-the Labor and Yair Lapid, the Yesh party Atid- avoid offering an alternative to the national security policies of an increasingly unrealistic right. The debate focuses more on Israel's image in how to end the settlements and violations of international law in the occupied territories.

Netanyahu Europe must assume stronger positions on the Palestinian issue
Decades of consent even by Israel's friends in Europe controversial policies have convinced the Israelis that they can do what they want. Now we see the fruits of such impunity that in the long term, it does a disservice to the country. Of course, the US has been the most tolerant. The role of well-financed pressure groups in the US policy makes the issue of Israel is addressed so as little logic as arms control. But Europe is also responsible, and can do much better. For example, despite the rhetorical condemnation of the settlement policy, Europeans have not even agreed to do something relatively easy as labeling of consumer products from those places.

Europe must not only strongly support the nuclear deal, encourage the disappearance of weapons of mass destruction and dialogue with Iran on regional issues, but also to take stronger positions on the Palestinian issue, starting with Israel to isolate transactions of its policy of occupation and settlements and distinguish between Israel and the settlements in all relationships. This does not mean neglecting the legitimate needs and Israeli security concerns, but leaving its tolerance towards controversial political and perhaps prevent extremism further progress when people begin to calculate the advantages and disadvantages of policies their leaders.


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