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Quoting Israelis, ‘NYT’ front pager says Iran will take a military strike lying down (won’t even raise oil prices!)

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Ethan Bronner
Ethan Bronner

Front page above the fold today at the ‘NYT,’ stenographer to the Israelis Ethan Bronner reports, “Israel Senses Bluffing in Iran’s Threats of Retaliation”:

Israeli intelligence estimates, backed by academic studies, have cast doubt on the widespread assumption that a military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities would set off a catastrophic set of events like a regional conflagration, widespread acts of terrorism and sky-high oil prices.

The estimates, which have been largely adopted by the country’s most senior officials, conclude that the threat of Iranian retaliation is partly bluff….

“A war is no picnic,” Defense Minister Ehud Barak said. But if Israel feels itself forced into action, the retaliation would be bearable, he said. “There will not be 100,000 dead or 10,000 dead or 1,000 dead. The state of Israel will not be destroyed.”

For American audiences, the translation is: If Israel attacks Iran, the consequences will be…what? Maybe not an enjoyable picnic, but one where ants invade the egg salad?

Nowhere in the story is there a mention of the anticipatable human and environmental consequences to the Iranian people. Additionally, all of those quoted are Israeli or affiliated with the Israeli government. Where is the balance? Where are the quotes from neutral, international conflict experts from organizations like the International Crisis Group or Transcend? This is one of the worst pieces of war journalism I’ve ever seen. We need peace journalism, now!

Matthew Taylor
About Matthew Taylor

Matthew A. Taylor is co-founder of PeacePower magazine, and author of "The Road to Nonviolent Coexistence in Palestine/Israel," a chapter in the book Nonviolent Coexistence.

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49 Responses

  1. Dan Crowther
    Dan Crowther
    January 27, 2012, 3:27 pm

    They will be greeted as liberators, come on Matt, get with the program!

    If Iran were attacked and didn’t retaliate, the Israeli’s and the US would be the pariahs of the world, and I hope that international civil society would sanction both countries furiously.

    A non response would be just what the doctor ordered for emerging coalitions in the Global South that Iran is apart of, it could be a tipping point…. I can’t state enough how much I hope this doesn’t happen (iran being attacked)

  2. Bill in Maryland
    Bill in Maryland
    January 27, 2012, 3:45 pm

    Thanks Matthew- had not heard about the concepts of war journalism and peace journalism– great to be aware of, and of course the NYT is a virtual textbook to learn the former. The thrust of Bronner’s piece is so sadly reminiscent of the lowballing of the risks and dangers of war that got us into Iraq: “it will be a cakewalk…”

  3. Blake
    January 27, 2012, 3:49 pm

    I would never trust a quote in the NYT. This is the same paper that spread the vicious rumor about Ahmadinejad wanted to blow Israel off the map.

  4. justicewillprevail
    January 27, 2012, 4:11 pm

    Of course they said the same horsecrap about Iraq, how it would be over in a week, the grateful population throwing flowers at the troops etc. these people are demented and don’t care, because they themselves will be well protected. Israel will sit on the sidelines and gloat whilst Iranians are killed by airstrikes and US lives are put in danger. They haven’t a clue what they are talking about, warmongering imbeciles. The repercussions from their stupidity in Iraq are by no means over, they are trying to foment war in Turkey, their is no end to their desire for chaos, war and destruction. Whilst they hide in their bunkers, screaming for more, more.

    • seafoid
      January 27, 2012, 5:37 pm

      It’s like the prelude to the fall of Lehman Brothers. Nobody ever stopped Lehmans from taking risk. Nobody ever stopped Israel. Regulation and sanctions matter . Nobody could put Lehmans back together again.

      • Abu Malia
        Abu Malia
        January 28, 2012, 11:42 am

        Your analogy will send shivers down the spine of any bona fide Zionist!

  5. seanmcbride
    January 27, 2012, 4:18 pm

    How have Ethan Bronner and the New York Times managed to keep sinking lower and lower? After several years now to contemplate and learn from their errors in promoting the disastrous Iraq War? What is WRONG with them?

    Two words: ethnic nationalism. It’s more debilitating than crack cocaine. It will destroy your judgment and common sense, and leave you utterly demented.

    Peter Beinart managed to achieve a course correction — he is a more developed human being, apparently, than most of the regulars at the New York Times, which is now mostly (with occasional exceptions) a propaganda arm of the Israeli government and the Israel lobby.

    • seafoid
      January 27, 2012, 5:39 pm

      When Israel really ***** up and the IDF is shown up for the flawed institution it is and people start leaving the New York Times won’t want to know. Same with the Christian fundamentalists.

    • RoHa
      January 27, 2012, 9:56 pm

      “the New York Times, which is now mostly (with occasional exceptions) a propaganda arm of the Israeli government and the Israel lobby.”

      But wasn’t the NYT the greatest threat to Israel just a few days ago?

    • January 27, 2012, 10:25 pm

      are we talking about the same Peter Beinart, Sean?
      Beinart’s solution to “how to make young American Jews as passionately zionist as I am” is to send more young Jews on Birthright trips & establish Hebrew schools in US, preferably supported with US taxpayer dollars.
      Beinart has more in common with Ben-Ami, son of an Irgun terrorist & acolyte to Jabotinsky, than with Uri Avnery or Amira Hass.

  6. Shingo
    January 27, 2012, 4:21 pm

    This is the buzzard world of the neocons.

    Iran must be attacked because it is a threat and an irrational actor, but attacking them will bear no repercussions because they are rational and won’t fight back.

    This contradiction was addressed by Walt a few months ago. Pure delusion.

  7. Bumblebye
    January 27, 2012, 4:30 pm

    The Iran obsession is to divert from the “piece” talks.
    Apparently Israel has decided to offer a “border” in the form of the Land and Jerusalem THEFT Wall:
    Unnamed Palestinian officials revealed this under anonymity due to Jordanian no-leaks rule.

    • seafoid
      January 27, 2012, 5:43 pm

      Israel can’t even get the Jewish settler hooligans in the “Migron” “outpost” to leave the site. Hebron is outside the wall. Who is going to clear the Jews out of there? The IDF? With which soldiers? The 40% that are religious?

      It is too late even for the wall, even if the Palestinians accepted it, which they can’t.
      Israel is going to have to sleep in the fine bed it has made itself.

  8. Charon
    January 27, 2012, 4:53 pm

    They’ve proven only to be terrible mind readers in the past. There is this human element called unpredictability. As much as people would like to, you can’t wrap a formula around it. Solving for the unknown doesn’t work very well when predicting the future.

    I wish that Hollywood would realize this so that some actual creative films could come out with a budget to execute their vision rather than be demoted to low-budget art house flicks that are not as complete as they were intended. Hollywood formula involves love mixed with action sequences. Throw some women barely wearing clothes in somewhere there. I’m surprised Inception was greenlit.

    We can only speculate what would happen if Israel attacked Iran. The good and the bad. The worst case scenario alone is reason against the attack. Even if there is a teeny tiny percentage that a nuclear world war chain reaction would result, why the heck would you take that risk? And Gas will most certainly rise to the double digits in any outcome.

    • seafoid
      January 27, 2012, 5:21 pm

      Oil shot up when the civil war started in Libya. In Feb 2011 the price of a barrel of light sweet crude was $84 and within 2 months it had hit $110.

      If Israel goes for Iran it’s going to go to $200 for starters . The markets hate uncertainty

      It’s easy for Barak to say there won’t be 1000 deaths. Even 100 dead Israelis is 100 too many. But psychopaths like him don’t care who does the dying, Jewish or otherwise.

      I wouldn’t trust an Israeli prediction to tell me the time. The 2003 Iraq war was supposed to be surgical. Over in a few weeks. The predicted that Afghanistan would be a piece of cake. They said Lebanon 2006 would see Hezbollah surrender within days.

      Meanwhile I wonder how many Israeli Jews are on tranquilisers now their psycho pols are ratcheting up the war rhetoric. The people have to be kept on a permanent edge of catastrophe , all in Hebrew of course.

      I also wonder if many of the older Sephardim, the ones that haven’t fallen for the siren songs of Shas, ever consider what the point was of moving to Israel with its mass kosher militaristic hysteria.

  9. Tzombo
    January 27, 2012, 4:54 pm

    They’re already starting to retaliate. A Dutch newspaper reported today that Iranian newspapers say Iran is ready to stop oil exports to the European Union countries by next week ( in order to pre-empt the EU oil boycott. The EU decided to start the boycott in July to leave the countries that import the most Iranian oil, Spain, Italy, Greece, time to find alternatives. If Iran goes through with this it could plunge Greece into total chaos…

    • seafoid
      January 27, 2012, 5:08 pm

      Poor Greece

      It wasn’t allowed let the flotilla sail last year under pressure from Israel and the Lobby and now Iran is threatening to cut off its cheap oil. Plus the Germans have imposed savage austerity .

    • Shingo
      January 27, 2012, 5:11 pm

      A Dutch newspaper reported today that Iranian newspapers say Iran is ready to stop oil exports to the European Union countries by next week

      You have to love how “Israeli intelligence estimates, backed by academic studies” are being debunked in real time.

    • January 27, 2012, 6:31 pm

      where is Mark Rich? He made his fortune by selling oil to Spain, Portugal & others during the OPEC boycott in 1973–>

  10. BillM
    January 27, 2012, 5:13 pm

    I must be old. I can remember when a Qassam rocket with a few pounds of home made explosives was such a devastating threat it was justification for killing and injuring thousands in Gaza. Now all of Iran’s, Hezbollah’s and Hamas’s rockets combined don’t mean much.

  11. BillM
    January 27, 2012, 5:26 pm

    I do enjoy the unintentional honesty in these kinds of reports. As Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel admits, the point of going to war with Iran it to prevent Iran from being able to AVOID a war:

    Speaking of the former leaders of Libya and Iraq, he said, “Who would have dared deal with Qaddafi or Saddam Hussein if they had a nuclear capability? No way.”

    Israel is willing to accept up to 1,000 casualties in a war to keep open its options of future wars.

  12. seafoid
    January 27, 2012, 5:34 pm

    “A war is no picnic,” Defense Minister Ehud Barak said

    Especially not if you are an Israeli Jewish conscript north of the Litani and your unit has been cut off from the rest of your army by Hezbollah and the Americans aren’t answering the phone..

    Also let us remember poor Ron Arad.

    • January 28, 2012, 12:31 pm

      according to Ronen Bergman in “The Secret War with Iran,” Israel has blamed Iran for “poor Ron Arad” and has killed numerous Iranians –including Iranian diplomats — to avenge Arad, and the Arad cause is STILL a goad that incites anti-Iranian sentiment among Israeli military. per Bergman.

      • braciole
        January 28, 2012, 6:14 pm

        So Israel attacks Iran and a few planes get shot down. Does Israel really expect to be able to rescue them all? Does Israel really expect that Iran will ever return these war criminals for free? How much will it cost Israel the United States to gain the release of these prisoners?

        The Ron Arad case demonstrates that Israel is psychotic. You send aircraft to attack a neighbouring country one of which is shot down and then murder nationals of another country because it is possible that the other country is holding one of those shot down.

  13. MHughes976
    January 27, 2012, 6:15 pm

    Yes indeed – Iran is an existential threat one minute, a negligible and contemptible weakling the next. My guess – and I pray I’m right – is that there is no intention of attacking Iran in the near future but it must not be said that the attackers were frightened off.

  14. January 27, 2012, 6:17 pm

    “Where are the quotes from neutral, international conflict experts”

    first, a rant– All of the non-Jewish neutral international conflict experts are ducking and covering against attack by Israel firsters that will tag any criticism of Israel as, well, you know the drill. If people who have spent their lives developing skills to resolve conflicts, and are going to be ignored anyway IN ADDITION to putting their reputations and livelihoods in the line of zionist fire, why would they bother? Thus, by default AS WELL AS zionist design, Jews or those who toe the zionist party line or at very least nod to the Jewish establishment, control the field. It’s not that no non-Jewish experts exist, there are plenty — John Entelis, Chas Freeman, Walter Hixson, John Mueller come to mind for starters — but they are shut out of the conversation. Hillary Leverett is quoted below — on her website recently, a participant suggested Leverett for ambassador to Iran. I admire Leverett a great deal but that would be a terrible move, for Jews and for non-Jews; why not just contract US diplomacy to Israel and be done with it, and we plain old American taxpayers can just keep pushing that plow and payin the freight. Ain’t gonna happen.

    As Dan Crowther said awhile back in response to eee’s promise to bring militias from Israel to defend American Jews, non-Jews in US are expected to remain neutered.

    ok. rant over.

    Here’s a conflict resolution expert who called out Martin Indyk, but elicited informative and intelligent responses from Ian Lustick and Hillary Leverett:

    “Q: I’m Diane Pearlman. I’m with the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University. And my question – I’d like to, like, frame the disagreements in terms of social science, coming from a background of conflict analysis, conflict transformation and actual social science, based on research.

    And it seems like the difference of opinion is not framed in this way, that they’re really coming from very different paradigms, and that the dominant paradigm that Martin Indyk was referring to – I’m sorry he’s not here – is based on coercion, threat, isolation, punishment and pressure to get people to do what we want parties to do. And even, like, the idea of engagement is usually put in the form of pressure. And it usually creates the opposite effect, and there’s research on, like, 100 cases of sanctions and they failed 86 percent of the time, and sort of, belief in deterrence theory as they only theory where, when you act that way, you can provoke – there’s also spiral theory and tension reduction.

    And Ian was talking about the hysteria, that parties are more dangerous when they’re afraid, and acting out of fear, you can justify the fears of the other party and keep ratcheting up the escalation. And also, exclusion – that a lot of things that policymakers – even well-meaning people believe in – have the opposite effect. So people were saying, we think that peace is not possible. Maybe it’s because of the lens that we’re using. I had this idea of the political Heisenberg Principle, that you can’t observe the behavior of a party like Iran without looking at the effect of our policy – a dynamic view, rather than a static view that they’re just the bad guys.

    So you know, my question is that, you know, that I think the comments, especially of, like, Hillary and Ian are consistent with principles of social science, conflict transformation, tension reduction. And you know, from what I’ve heard from very few people are the common interests between Israel and Iran that could be mutually beneficial. So could you respond to that, and also, maybe, frame it in the context of social science?

    Ian Lustick’s response:

    MR. LUSTICK: I tend to like to answer questions in that way, and I should be able to trace everything I say to some kind of theoretical basis. But I mentioned so many topics and if you talk about the psychological factor that I mentioned, I think that it’s when you have that kind of trauma that’s enshrined in the mythology of a political formula and it’s institutionalized.

    And what happens in any ideology, including Zionism, is that the founding problem that – the problem that existed when it came about as a solution – that problem gets solved and the world is very, very different from the world where the institutionalization of that solution is operating. It’s no longer – it keeps operating in the same way. You have efforts to redeem land in Negali (ph) when there’s no shortage of land for Jews to live in Negali. You have immigration efforts save Jews from – when there’s no immigration.

    And so you have a fear that there’s Nazi-like anti-Semitism, and therefore, you’re seeing it all the time. And this is partly the leftovers of the trauma itself – and there’s a tremendous literature on PTSD, which, if you read it, you can see a lot more about Israel than otherwise would see – and one of the things that it does is, it forces the victims to keep seeing things that aren’t there, but seeing things that are other things as if they were the Nazis.

    So how do you deal with that? There’s a lot of controversy, a lot of different approaches to PTSD. And I’m not so sure you can just automatically take even a clinical practice and apply it nationally. But I think in the long run, Israel and Jews in general have to remove remembrance of the Holocaust as such a central part of their lives if Israel is going to avoid the utter tragedy of producing that which it most fears.”

    –> Phil, Adam, the bolded statement in Lustick’s response is why it is so important to open the conversation to “holocaust denial.” Anybody who knows anything about resolving psychological trauma, real or perniciously reinforced for political purposes, knows that you have got to start by establishing the facts of the situation, not the hyperbolized fears. When my children were babies we and they were smart enough to know that when they were afraid to turn the lights out at night, we assured them that no boogey men were under the bed or in the closet by looking under the bed and throwing open the closet and laughing ourselves silly as we were greeted with dust bunnies and shirts and shoes, but no ghosts. You have GOT to confront reality and stop reinforcing pathology.

    end of second rant, and on to

    Leverett’s response:

    MS. MANN LEVERETT: I think I understood, maybe, the core of your question as, are there mutual interests that Israel and Iran could play off with one another? You know, it’s very interesting, in Trita Parsi’s book, “The Treacherous Alliance,” where he documents a lot about the relationship between the United States, Israel and Iran, he makes this argument that it wasn’t until after the Iran-Iraq war and the fall of the Soviet Union that the Iranian-Israeli relationship became so acrimonious.

    We all remember the 1980s very clearly, the Iran-Contra scandal. The Israelis were supplying the Iranians with all sorts of weapons systems and other things. And even at the height of what could have been cast as the revolutionary period for Iran after the fall of the shah and the establishment of the Islamic Republic, that first decade was not one that was really marked by Israeli-Iranian acrimony. There was a lot more cooperation.

    What Parsi argues is that the end of the Iran-Iraq war and the fall of the Soviet Union – the end of the Cold War – essentially deprived Israel and Iran of a common enemy that they could arm against, that they could rally against, that they could have mutual interests, here and there, against. Nothing has really replaced that, in terms of some common cause. And instead, what’s happened is – and I think in particular, unfortunately, with the support of the United States, is that these two critically important players in the Middle East – Israel and Iran – have become regional rivals, regional competitors. And they see, then, everything through the lens of zero-sum terms.

    Whether it’s possible for, at this point, there to be a common agenda is – you know, I think is speculative, at best. But I will put out one thing from my experience dealing with the Iranians officially over Afghanistan. We dealt with the Iranians over Afghanistan as a partner. So for example, for the donor summits on Afghanistan, particularly the first one in Tokyo – January, 2002 – the Iranians were not just invited to the donors conference; they were put on a steering committee. They put up $500 million and they are one of the few countries in the world that has actually made good on almost every penny of their stated donation to Afghanistan. They were on the steering committee.

    What did we do after the 2008 Operation Iron Cast (sic) Israel military operation in Gaza? We had a similar, kind of, donors conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, but we did what we always do on Iran, when it comes to Palestinian issues. We didn’t put them on the steering committee. We kept them out and we made it as if this was a rallying cry for the entire Middle East to stand against Iran and Hamas. That is a really poor paradigm for any kind of functional diplomacy.

    Now, I’m not saying that it would work the same way that it did in Afghanistan, but we do have a precedent where Iran worked cooperatively with the United States, even when our interests are not always allied, in Afghanistan. They’ve worked with us, in some instances, on Iraq, where our interests are not always allied.

    So I’m not saying that there are high hopes for any kind of common agenda between Israel and Iran, but we know for a fact that setting them up and goading them to be each other’s regional rivals, that, that doesn’t work. So I do think that you’re right: We should be looking for something where the Iranians can be brought in, in a way that’s not necessarily confrontational or controversial – into a donors conference. That’s not something that should be that hard.”


  15. seafoid
    January 27, 2012, 6:22 pm

    This song is as relevant as ever with Israel threatening to go to war with Iran

    By the time Bush is done, you won’t know what time it is
    If it’s war time or jail time, time for promises
    And time to figure out where the enemy is
    The same devils that you used to love to hate
    They got you so gassed and shook now, you scared to debate
    The same ones that traded books for guns
    Smuggled drugs for funds
    And had fun lettin’ off forty-one
    But now it’s all about NYPD caps
    And Pentagon bumper stickers
    But yo, you still a nigga
    It ain’t right them cops and them firemen died
    The shit is real tragic, but it damn sure ain’t magic
    It won’t make the brutality disappear
    It won’t pull equality from behind your ear
    It won’t make a difference in a two-party country
    If the president cheats, to win another four years

  16. American
    January 27, 2012, 7:09 pm

    Israeli propaganda.
    You can attack Iran for us Uncle Sam, they won’t do anything, your fears of reprecussions are silly…our Israeli intelligence says no problemo.

    • MLE
      January 28, 2012, 12:40 am

      And unlike your laughabley incompetent CIA and NSA, our intelligence is never wrong. Don’t even get us started on your TSA.

      Your police agencies watch racist propaganda films, if we were in charge, all the Muslims would be in internment camps in South Dakota, and we’d build a huge concrete wall to keep the illegal immigrants out- only instead of building it along the current border, it would be built just north of Mexico City. For security measures, of course.

      BTW, Obama, the check for February is late. We won’t charge you interest since you were so nice during the SOTU, but don’t push it. Also, call BiBi in the morning, he has some things he wants to talk about.

  17. proudzionist777
    January 27, 2012, 8:21 pm

    A few dozen more Syrians were slaughtered today and none of you have a thing a say.

    How I loathe you hypocrites.

    • MLE
      January 27, 2012, 8:49 pm

      Oh shut up. You don’t give a shit about the Syrians. Even if there is regime change, the next Syrian government isn’t going to be more pro-Israel. It’s just another country your prime minister can whine about falling to Islamism.

      • MLE
        January 27, 2012, 9:03 pm

        PZ, an 18 year old protestor in Bahrain was killed while in police appears he was tortured, where’s your concern about that, you hypocrite?

    • Djinn
      January 27, 2012, 10:07 pm

      My government doesnt approve of every bit of killing and torture carried out by Assad’s regime, they don’t take sponsored PR visits to Damascus, they dont insult and abuse us when we protest at various murdering regimes embassies. So those of us who care about human rights feel the need to fill in the gaps of their concern and condemnation. BTW Think the loathing is pretty roundly reciprocated.

    • Citizen
      January 28, 2012, 5:59 am

      Gee, I did not know America was funding the Syrian regime, and so lavishly! Can we give it our latest cutting edge weapons? Here, let’s write out a check.

    • Taxi
      January 28, 2012, 6:09 am


      I bet my farm that I loath you more than you loath me.

      And I’d rather be an armchair hypocrite (which I’m not) than be an Apartheid israeli citizen. At least hypocrisy is curable.

    • justicewillprevail
      January 28, 2012, 6:32 am

      And what does arch-hypocrite ashamed zionist have to say about the Palestinians killed, jailed and dispossessed by the IDF militias on a continual basis? Plenty to loathe there. Or perhaps you’d like to point out where on this site anyone supported the deaths of Syrians? And where on your ever so sensitive hypocrisy meter does the death of innocent Iranians figure? What you loathe isn’t anything about Syrians, or any human beings welfare, it is the exposure of your feeble myths and lies.

  18. Pamela Olson
    Pamela Olson
    January 27, 2012, 9:20 pm

    Check out the comments section on Ethan’s article, though. Of the 20 or so I read, 90% were sensible, against any attack on Iran, and highly critical of Israel.

    As usual, NYT’s readers are more intelligent and informed than their reporters. Bronner is an absolute disgrace.

    • MLE
      January 28, 2012, 12:28 am

      It’s to keep readers like my parents happy. They already think NYT is too critical of Israel. They find BBC too critical as well and CNN is “centrist,” but the reporting is incredibely low brow.

      If the NYT really started criticizing Israel, I have no idea what they would do. They are very stereotypical NYT “elitist liberals,” so they won’t switch to the Wall Street Journal, and I don’t think the Washington Post is cultured enough for them.

  19. ToivoS
    January 27, 2012, 9:52 pm

    In August 1914 both sides were saying that the war would be over in 6 months. Four years later the number of dead soldiers amounted to about 9 million — French, English, German, Austrian, Serbian and Russian. Who could of known?

    As we all know that cataclysm was the precursor to WWII where another 20 million died in Europe alone. And we are now entertaining Israeli estimates that a war against Iran will not be that bad. We are being led by fools.

    • Taxi
      January 28, 2012, 6:22 am

      Saddam thought he could finish off Iran in six months – and TEN YEARS LATER an estimated one million Iraqis and Iranians had died as a result. Saddam only won because suddenly overnight, the Americans decided to finally supply him with sophisticated military radars that tracked down Iranian battalion and infantry maneuvers minute by minute.

  20. Opaleye
    January 28, 2012, 12:54 am

    They are promising less than 1000 dead in Israel, as if 900 dead would be no big deal. Let me point out that during the recent Lebanon war and the Gaza slaughter, every military casualty was treated by their media as if it was the end of the world. They were completely freaking out at the casualty rate in the Lebanon war. So this is just more bluff and nonsense, but with the US media the way it is, this campaign to promote the Iran war as a kind of adventure holiday might end up working.

    • Shingo
      January 28, 2012, 5:42 am

      Very true Opaleye,

      In fact Meir Dagan said that an Iran/Hezbollah retaliation would paralyze Israel.

  21. NickJOCW
    January 28, 2012, 9:20 am

    Israel is not in a particularly healthy condition, hasn’t been for some time. Attacking Iran could be like a guy with a dicky ticker having a go at the 4 minute mile. Whatever the Israeli panjandrums may think, most of us have had quite enough of this confrontational approach to anything this or that nation doesn’t like, and an Israeli attack is likely to annoy a lot of people; not exactly what our strife torn world needs right now. Strange as it may seem, even a nuclear armed Iran doesn’t bother many, at least not as much as a similarly armed Israel. Israelis delude themselves that they are loved by many, but it isn’t true – sullen acceptance would be closer. Of course, there is an overlay of capitalist enthusiasm, but Western capitalism itself is under scrutiny. We have also seen how groups like LGBT, whose success in their foundational aspirations has left them open to other causes, have adopted the Palestinians. What I am suggesting is that there is a hell of a lot of anger out there, much of it roaming around like a hungry lion, and although it is not specifically targeting Israel as prey it could converge on it. No nation wants Israel to attack Iran. Just imagine, this tiny little nation, whose population scarcely exceeds the number of inmates in the US prison system, taking upon itself to do something so irresponsible, something that cannot conceivably benefit a single member of the human race. It would be perverse to do so, but one could imagine oneself wishing they would try.

  22. FreddyV
    January 28, 2012, 11:04 am

    This is all stinks of Zionists stirring the shizzle to make sure they get a Republican candidate who will have his tongue up Israel’s bumhole.

    Iran isn’t doing anything it hasn’t been doing for years. Why the sudden fuss?

    A Ron Paul vs Obama election is a lose lose for Israel. I think if Obama gets a second term, he’ll have nothing to lose and everything to gain from putting that little snot of a country in their place and I think they know that he’ll do it, so they’re playing the victim card and fueling US Zionist and fundie paranoia.

    On another note: ProudZionist does an excellent job of derailing otherwise good threads. Wouldn’t it be a wise idea to treat such comments like an grandparent who farts in front of you? Just say nothing and wait for the bad smell to go away.

  23. HarryLaw
    January 28, 2012, 11:08 am

    Europe to Iran, we want to cripple you but because our present economic circumstances will not allow us to do so immediately we will wait till july, so that we can find alternate sources of energy. You really could not make this sort of thing up. I would, as I think the Iranians are doing stop those oil sales immediately, I personally would sooner eat grass than give in to these hypocrites.

  24. kma
    January 28, 2012, 11:27 am

    Bronner is speaking from the viewpoint of an Israeli: our war with Iraq WAS a cakewalk for them, so what’s another one?
    Israel is foaming at the mouth to “help” by exterminating as many of Iran’s “sponsored terrorists” (Palestinian, Lebanese, Syrian civilians and infrastructure) as it can.

  25. pabelmont
    January 28, 2012, 11:52 am

    “But if Israel feels itself forced into action, the retaliation would be bearable.” (This is the LIFE OF THE HAPPY WARRIOR IS BEAUTIFUL scenario).

    The alternative, unspoken, is THIS: “But if Israel feels itself forced into action, the retaliation would be UN-bearable” (this is the BETWEEN ROCK AND HARD-PLACE scenario).

    Bronner cheerfully quotes the HAPPY WARRIORs, but does not inquire as to
    [a] what would make Israeli leaders “FEEL FORCED INTO ACTION” or [b] why they feel it would be acceptable.

    So he transmits the UNEXAMINED ASSUMPTION (of low-cost) and the equally unexamined idea that Israel would REASONABLY decide if it were forced into action.

  26. split
    January 29, 2012, 10:59 am

    “Quoting Israelis, ‘NYT’ front pager says Iran will take a military strike lying down (won’t even raise oil prices!)” – So, why do they incite/prefere others to do the job ?,…

  27. Justice Please
    Justice Please
    January 29, 2012, 6:24 pm

    Well, somebody has to pick up the ball where Judy Miller left it, right?

    Thousand of years on, and we still don’t punish people anywhere near enough who push others into illegal wars of aggression.

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