The Jerusalem Post publishes an article by historical revisionist, Benny Morris, titled This Holocaust will be different. Special thanks to Daniel for bringing it to my attention.
Tundraman makes the initial analysis with the following: This is just about the most pessimistic essay I have seen in a long time – which does not mean that it does not have a point or two. Especially the second and third paragraphs below (that I extracted from the article) strikes me as very true..However, I think that the whole article is very much the result of the spirit described in the first paragraph below:
“DEPUTY DEFENSE Minister Ephraim Sneh has suggested that Iran doesn’t even have to use the Bomb to destroy Israel. Simply, the nuclearization of Iran will so overawe and depress Israelis that they will lose hope and gradually emigrate, and potential foreign investors and immigrants will shy away from the mortally threatened Jewish state. These, together, will bring about its demise. But my feeling is that Ahmadinejad and his allies lack the patience for such a drawn-out denouement; they seek Israel’s annihilation in the here and now, in the immediate future, in their lifetime.”
It is indeed a very pessimistic essay, and further underlines the ridiculous European approach of; “talk softly while carrying a big carrot“. Trying to placate extremist demands with promises of new business ventures and other kinds of financial incentives is a lose, lose proposition.
It takes away any measure of hope from the large base of discontented Iranians that the West is serious about change in Iran. Ahmadinejad is highly disregarded by the average Iranian, whose average age is thirty years. I have heard that many Iranians are proud that the President of Israel, Katsav, was born in Iran, but all this of course does nothing to change the facts at hand.
The Iranian regime is intent on securing a bomb that will bring an added sense of security from outside pressure on domestic issues, believe me, once they obtain the bomb, they not only have a weapon to destroy Israel with, but they have a means to forestall any military strike against them due to any of their conventional military excursions they choose to embark on, as well as the freedom to clamp down on any public unrest.
Michael Rubin wrote a good essay on Iran last year (viewable here), and a more recent one here, that needs to be considered. Military strikes are not totally necessary, if there is a newly found Western resolve to do this thing right. Aiding and abetting a despotic regime, as did the US in their wheat sales to the USSR, proved to be a self defeating policy. Only when the US stood up to the USSR (thanks to Sen.”Scoop” Jackson), in demanding a “quid pro quo” for any future material help, in exchange for substantial changes in their human rights policy for Soviet citizens, did the Soviet enterprise begin to lose its grip.
Al Avai takes note: As I write this I can gaze from my window out over the Haifa bay, so the thoughts in the article below are very graphic for me. Firstly, the pessimism that the depressed Israelis will simply leave the country if Iran develops a weapon. The Americans, and for that matter theBritish and French, lived under the Soviet nuclear shadow for decades. The British didn’t move to Sweden because Sweden was less likely to be a Soviet target, lacking its own weapons. The Americans and NATO were locked in the equation of mutual destruction, and the British could not have fully destroyed the Soviet Union if it were attacked.
For this reason, the too early/too late argument makes no sense to me either. The Iranians have to know that Israel will retaliate even if it is struck, and will do so merely for the deterrence factor the likely destruction of Tehran offers. The Iranian President may be forced to move away from nuclear issues by the clerics, and his position is in any case been weakened.
The trick is to apply hard pressure, but not so hard that Iran reacts precipitously, and for the USA and others to have a clear position as to what the red line is and what to do when that is crossed. On wonders, though, what the real address and purpose of that column was, considering who wrote it. Shalom
I add to Avai’s well founded logic, that given the propensity of B.Morris to “color over and obfuscate” vast tracks of the historical record in order to embelish his own ideological views of Israeli history, one has to consider the likelihood that his recent article is the first attempt at scare mongering Israelis into leaving for “safer shores”. I personally have little trust in the man’s intellectual integrity as well as his prowess as a historian, not to mention his truer aims for the state of Israel. KGS