Reprinted from Gush Shalom
What if the wily Persians did not even dream of building an atomic bomb, but used the threat to further their real aims?
What if Binyamin Netanyahu was duped to become unwittingly the main collaborator of Iranian ambitions?
Sounds crazy? Not really. Let's have a look at the facts.
IRAN IS one of the oldest powers in the world, with thousands of years of political experience. Once they possessed an empire that spanned the civilized world, including our little country. Their reputation for clever trade practices is unequaled.
They are much too clever to build a nuclear weapon. What for? It would devour huge amounts of money. They know that they would never be able to use it. Same as Israel, with its large stockpile.
Netanyahu's nightmare of an Iranian nuclear attack on Israel is just that -- a nightmare (or daymare) of an ignorant dilettante. Israel is a nuclear power with a solid second-strike capability. As we see, the Iranian leaders are hard-boiled realists. Would they even dream of inviting an inevitable Israeli retaliation that would wipe from the face of the earth their three-millennia-old civilization?
(If this capability is defective, Netanyahu should be charged and convicted for criminal negligence.)
Even if the Iranians did deceive the whole world and build a nuclear bomb, nothing would happen except the creation of a "balance of terror," such as saved the world at the height of the cold war between America and Russia.
The people around Netanyahu pretend to believe that, unlike the then Soviets, the Iranian mullahs are crazy people. There is absolutely no evidence for that. Since their 1979 revolution, the Iranian leadership has not made one single important step that was not absolutely rational. Compared to American missteps in the region (not to mention the Israeli ones), the Iranian leadership has been thoroughly logical.
So perhaps they traded their nonexistent nuclear designs for their very real political design: to become the hegemon of the Muslim world.
If so, they owe a lot to Netanyahu.
WHAT HAS the Islamic Republic ever done in its 45 years of existence to harm Israel?
Sure. Tehran crowds can be seen on television burning Israeli flags and shouting "Death to Israel!" They call us, not flatteringly, "the Little Satan," as compared to the American "Great Satan."
Terrible. But what else?
Not much. Perhaps some support for Hezbollah and Hamas, which were not their creation. Iran's real fight is against the powers that be in the Muslim world. They want to turn the region's countries into Iranian vassals, as they were 2400 years ago.