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lear and present danger (ISRAEL HAYOM OP-ED) Dr. Haim Shine 04/19/12)Source: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_opinion.php?id=1797 Israel Hayom Israel Hayom Articles-Index-TopPublishers-Index-Top
Over the weekend, the former head of the Israel Security Agency Yuval Diskin joined the bizarre chorus of former security chiefs attacking Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak on the matter of a possible attack of Iran´s nuclear facilities.

This ´chorus of formers´ is irresponsibly trying to create the impression that Netanyahu and Barak, due to their love for battle, are just counting the minutes and seconds to issue the Israel Defense Forces with instructions to attack, endangering the lives of pilots, combat soldiers, Mossad officers and many others who would participate in such an attack on Iran.

These former security chiefs ignore the basic fact of life that those who lose family members, friends and subordinates in war know the immense responsibility demanded of those who send their soldiers onto the battlefield.

One of the major Israeli diplomatic achievements since the state´s inception has been to convince many other countries in the world, especially the U.S., England, France and Germany, that nuclear weapons in the hands of the ayatollahs is a threat to the entire world. If we were only talking about a threat to Israel, one may assume that no country in the world would bother to implement sanctions or seriously threaten Iran by saying that "all options are on the table." When Netanyahu moved the issue of a nuclear Iran to the top of his agenda, no one in the world had yet seriously related to the issue. With hard work and considerable talent, the heads of the Israeli state recruited meaningful support for dealing with these evil, dark powers.

In addition, important world leaders understand that Russia and China are cooperating with oppressive and violent dictatorships for the sole reason that defeating tyranny in Syria and Iran might also arouse unrest at home from their own citizens, wishing to exercise their freedom and liberty.

Israel´s diplomatic success relied, in part, on the recognition that Israel will not hesitate to take action if talks between Iran and the West ultimately fail. Were Israel´s threat an idle one, it would not have accelerated international moves nor created the urgency required to stop Iran´s uranium enrichment.

Talk by former security chiefs against attacking Iran weakens Israel´s position and harms its ability to end this crisis without requiring military force. Their talk, well internalized by Iran, is likely to lead ultimately to an actual attack on Iran. Any talk against an Israeli assault on Iran and published in the media, has already made its way around the world, endangering the global coalition against Iran and weakening Israeli citizens´ steadfastness. One might expect a greater degree of patriotism in the face of a clear and present danger. These same officials who now speak out had enough channels to convey their criticism and fears of an attack directly to the leaders of the state, instead of going pubic with their criticisms.

In 1981, high-ranking Israeli officials who knew about intentions to attack Iraq´s nuclear reactor also committed serious acts to prevent the attack. To the good fortune of Israel´s citizens and others in the region, Prime Minister Menachem Begin ignored their criticism and freed the world of this concrete nuclear threat. It is unfortunate that this is taking place once again. There will always be high- ranking officials among us who refuse to learn from the past. I am convinced that the country´s leadership will act in the interests of Israel´s existence, disregarding those who offer bad advice.


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