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Opinion The map of connections: between Isfahan, Ramallah and the legal reform Israel today


In Washington, the nuclear concerns, the political deadlock vis-a-vis the Palestinians and the questions of democracy and governance are tied together • If Israel wants to continue to have Iran's support, it will have to pay elsewhere

As in previous cases, this week's attack in Iran ignites the imagination.

This is not only the fact that the Iranians were once again caught by complete surprise in the face of what appears to be a precise attack on their strategic asset, but the ability of the attackers to combine intelligence and armaments into a successful operation in the enemy's rear.

It didn't take long before the accusing finger was pointed at Israel.

Although in the first minutes there were those who claimed that the USA was behind the action, but in Washington they were quick to disavow and pointed (in a leak to the press) to Jerusalem. This shows an interesting American strategy: on the one hand, Washington does not want to confront Iran openly so as not to risk damaging its assets in the Persian Gulf On the other hand, it cooperates with Israel in every way - from intelligence exchanges and operational cooperation, to joint exercises (including a huge exercise held in the area right next to the attack), when the clear and declared common enemy is Iran.

It seems that even in Israel they were not really moved by the almost official responsibility that was placed on the Mossad as being responsible for the attack.

This is not only the fact that it is clear to everyone that there are very few countries capable of carrying out such a surgical attack, in the heart of Iran, nor is it only the knowledge that Iran will blame Israel for almost everything - from military attacks to encouraging protests and rising inflation;

Beyond all of this, Israel wants to openly cultivate an image of someone who conducts an aggressive policy against Iran, in the hope that this will help it create a significant deterrent in the nuclear issue.

The goal: undermining Iranian security

The Iranian issue also took center stage in the talks conducted by the US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, this week in Israel.

In Israel, they are trying to convince the US, and through it the entire West, to conduct a more aggressive policy towards Iran, with limited success so far. The professionals on both sides of the Atlantic see eye to eye on the threat, but the political leaderships analyze its meanings differently.

In Israel they believe that the coming months are critical for containing the Iranians.

These things take on new significance against the background of the figure revealed here by the outgoing Chief of Staff, Aviv Kochavi, that Iran operates a clandestine weapons group. He made it clear that this prohibited activity is carried out on a small scale, but its very existence is a double red light: First, that Iran is taking steps active in order to advance not only on the track of accumulating enriched uranium but also towards the bomb itself; and secondly, because it shows that Iran appreciates that it has room to maneuver without paying a price for it, in other words - that the international deterrence towards it is limited.

Among other things, this is a result of the war in Ukraine.

The contract for the supply of drones to Russia, some of which were supposed to be produced in the factory that was attacked this week, placed Iran at the center of Moscow's interests, and the lessons of the war - chief among them the fact that nuclear weapons give the country immunity, and taking them from it puts its independence in danger - probably strengthened the faith of the leadership in Tehran that the nuclear is a guarantee for eternal rule, and perhaps even for the expansion of the Islamic revolution and the achievement of other strategic goals. It is doubtful whether these include the physical destruction of Israel, but it does not matter; if, God forbid, Iran has nuclear weapons, the entire regional balance will change, and other countries - from Saudi Arabia and Egypt to Turkey - They will run to arm themselves with nukes, which will turn the Middle East into a big madhouse.

Israel is interested in undermining Iranian security, among other things through attacks.

Although the latest action was not directed against the nuclear project, it was part of an organized and declared campaign, the purpose of which is to harm Iran in any place and in any way.

This policy is common to all recent Israeli governments: its roots are with Sharon and Olmert and the previous Netanyahu governments, and it continues with Bennett and Lapid and the current government.

Whoever thinks that the attack in Isfahan shows a change in policy, is not in the profession.

It requires months of preparation - from gathering intelligence to honing the operational capability, which according to the Iranian claim was transported from the Kurdish territory in Iraq.

Not on the pita alone

It can be assumed that the Americans were not surprised by this attack.

Not only because of the intimate relations that the two policies are careful to manage in such matters, a result of cooperation, mutual dependence and high trust, but because no one in Jerusalem would dare to risk an unnecessary incident during Blinken's visit.

Not that Israel needs a green light from Washington, but it is likely that she at least received a wink and a small smile - if not before the action, then certainly after it.

But the guest was interested in other things.

With all the importance that Israel attaches to Iran, Washington is much more disturbed by what is happening here.

Contrary to the impression they tried to create in Jerusalem, the Americans preoccupied themselves with the visit regarding governance and democracy, and by extension.

He attended each of the meetings, and to make sure that Israel understood the message, Lincoln left a team from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Israel to monitor.

It is possible to conduct a whole discussion around this American activism, and how legitimate it is within the framework of a country's intervention in the affairs of another sovereign country.

This is an interesting academic debate - which several of my colleagues are engaged in intensively, including over the pages of this paper - but it is a one-sided debate.

Nothing written or said here will persuade the Americans to refrain from this involvement;

They see it as part of protecting their interests, and have done and will do so in other countries as well (sometimes with the enthusiastic encouragement of Israel).

The Americans do not say this explicitly, but they look at a broad picture, which includes Iran and the Palestinians, the Gulf states and the governments.

There is quite a bit of naivety in this;

The American Secretary of State also concluded his current visit - as all his predecessors have done in the past three decades - with a meeting with the chairman of the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah, in the hope that the parties will advance confidence-building measures. These are important words, but disconnected from the harsh reality that has marked the bloodiest month in years. More than hope to change it, and one has to be especially optimistic to believe that it can happen in the foreseeable future and without previously going through the path of escalation and blood.

And yet, you have to look at the broader context of the American message.

It seems that Jerusalem misses this, or believes that they will still be able to do everything: both to conduct a campaign against Iran, both to promote unilateral measures in the West, and also to carry out a legal coup. As always, reality will strike Israel in the face. Ann Al-Ahmar teaches, once again, that reality is stronger than all promises.

Israel should not shy away from promoting policies, but it should act wisely and responsibly.

Abolishing pitots for security prisoners is important, but it seems to contribute more to the image of the Minister of National Security than to the night's sleep of the residents of the Gaza Strip.

In an especially explosive reality in all sectors, it would be appropriate for the government to establish a clear order of priorities and act according to it, and not burden more issues than it can digest.

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Source: israelhayom

All news articles on 2023-02-02

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