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Headline: Israel warns Russia and puts the U.S. on notice --- What?

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Let's see if I have this right. On this planet of 6.8 billion people, a nation with a population of 7.5 million, about the size of Massachusetts, issues a stern warning to Russia, and then puts the United States "on notice." That striking example of confrontational behavior has, once again, illustrated how Israel continues to try to force its agenda on other nations; in effect, the message is, "you're either with us or against us."

Reports out of Russia in early September stated that, during a shouting match between Russian President Medvedev and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, Israel's leader warned, "We'll bring the whole world down with us if we have to." This comment supposedly came after Netanyahu was informed by Medvedev that Russia would not go along with Israel's plans to bomb Iran's nuclear facilities and would, very likely, retaliate if the attacks were carried out. Very dangerous rhetoric on the part of both parties.

Considering the myriad of problems swirling around Israel and the Middle East why Israel would get involved in Russia's backyard is difficult to comprehend; but it has. The Russian Itar-Tass news agency reported on February 12 of this year that Israel was not only supplying Georgia, once a part of the Soviet Union but now an adversary, with drones but was also supplying it with very large amounts of sophisticated weaponry. This could enable Georgia to prepare for another attempt to gain control of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, two territories of contention between Georgia and Russia.

On March 9, Vice-President Joe Biden was blindsided when, during his visit, the Israeli government announced plans to construct 1,600 new housing units in East Jerusalem -- it had previously announced settlement expansion in the West Bank. In addition to that affront, a headline from the Asian Times, March 13, 2009 stated: "Israel puts the U.S. on notice." This, apparently, was meant to be a stern warning to Washington that if the U.S. continues to hold Israel back from a strike on Iran, there will be consequences.

These warnings and recent actions by Israel reflect a high degree of arrogance and recklessness. That this tiny nation of Israel has the audacity to rattle its sabers in the face of both Russia and America, the world's largest nuclear powers, is astounding.

The state of Israel has been in existence for more than 60 years and, over that period of time, has been involved in numerous regional conflicts and outright wars. While there have been any number of attempts by the U.S. and other nations to mediate peace accords between Israel and Palestine, to this day, there has been no success or real progress and there continues to remain a deep distrust and suspicion between Israel and its neighbors over this issue.

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Michael Payne is an independent, progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues. He is a featured writer on OpEdNews and Nation of Change and his articles have appeared on many other websites (more...)
 

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