Nobody who follows the Middle East can be surprised to find out that Israel is apparently considering an offensive attack on Iran. Why is Israel considering attacking Iran? Because the Iranians are trying to develop nuclear weapons. Who already has nuclear weapons? Israel.
The Iranian government is made up of fundamentalist religious nuts. I’m not thrilled about the idea of them having nuclear weapons. But I’m also not happy about Israel having nuclear weapons — or Pakistan or India or France or Russia or the United States. If you want to get brutal about reality, there’s only been one government so far that has shown the willingness to kill and maim hundreds of thousands of civilians with nuclear weapons — and that wasn’t Iran.
If a war between Israel and Iran (and possibly other neighbors) starts, it seems very likely that the United States will be pulled into the mess. It seems even more likely that the flow of oil to the U.S. economy will be disrupted. Gasoline and heating oil will become massively more expensive, which will probably create cries for price controls, leading to shortages and possible rationing. Even if you disregard to tremendous human cost to the participants, the price for the rest of the world will likely be huge if a full-scale war erupts.
And why do so many in the United States want to support Israel, even though it’s a semi-socialist country that was built by taking land from other people and continues to brutally attack others? For some people (both Christians and Jews), it’s all about strange religious ideas. For others, it’s leftover collective guilt about the Holocaust 75 years ago. For various reasons, the United States seems committed to supporting a state on the other side of the world which has nothing to do with our own national interests (even if you assume such things are legitimate).
If the United States gets involved in a shooting war with Iran, it will only be because we’re blindly hypocritical in accepting things from Israel that we would never accept from Iran. I’ve talked before about the evils of antisemitism, but it’s not antisemitic to point out that supporting the state of Israel isn’t in our best interests.
Nothing good is going to come out of attacking Iran, by Israel or the United States. Give them time and the Iranian people will overthrow their religious dictators. We don’t need to help bring about national unity for them by creating a common enemy.
Note: If you’d like to know more about Israel’s nuclear weapons program, this interview with the Israeli who revealed the truth about the weapons is interesting. After working with the weapons program, Mordechai Vanunu believed he was doing the wrong thing, so he revealed the secrets. Israeli officials then kidnapped him in Rome and brought him back to Israel, where he was send to prison for 18 years.