Israel has a greater interest in supporting the deal with Iran

What’s in the best interest of Israel? Is it to allow the current nuclear deal with Iran to stand, or should it follow a confrontational path? Many in the US claim their opposition to the Iran deal is due to their concern for “Israel’s security.” I beg the question, what’s in the best interest of Israel? Is a war really the best option?

Of course in the US, Israel has often been a hot button issue. This has been especially true when discussing Iran. The right-wing in the US and Israel have often used Iran as a source of fear-mongering. Now that a credible deal on Iran’s nuclear program is on the table, the right has gone full force to derail it and Israel has become the main excuse.

War is the only solution Benjamin Netanyahu and his allies in the US desire. Peace was never an option to them. Sure they claim to offer peace, but the terms they set were never genuine attempts at compromise. They effectively expected Iran to surrender its sovereignty to the US and Israel, which any rational actor would concede is counterproductive to a deal.

Many current and former Israeli military brass support the deal, including many average Israelis. A letter was signed by 340 rabbis in the US to support the Iran deal. The issue is not black and white. Not all Jews are like Netanyahu, not even close. Many want this deal to go through, because the alternative would be disastrous for Israel.

Netanyahu can saber rattle all he likes, he knows that the Israeli military cannot take on Iran alone. While Israel has the most capable military force in the region, several factors work against Israel in a direct strike against Iran.

One issue is that Israel does not share an immediate border with Iran, and in fact would have to fly over at least three sovereign nations to reach Iranian airspace. A ground invasion would be unfeasible, and air strikes incredibly risky. Iran is also a large nation, with varying terrain, and well equipped air defenses. Any attempted solo attack on Iran by Israel would not go without many casualties, and uncertain results.

Of course, the plan was never for Israel to launch an attack, but to goad the US into using its muscle to do so. The issue remains, of course, is whether such a war would benefit Israel’s security. I would guess not. Attacking Iran would not be like attacking Iraq. Iran is not the unarmed nation Iraq was back in 2003.

Any war with Iran would also ensure an offensive from Iran’s allies in the region. Groups like Hezbollah for example would attack targets in Israel if a war was provoked. The fact is, Iran also not a security threat the way it is portrayed.

Iran is a fairly conservative player in the region. Yes it does sponsor terror cells and groups sympathetic to it, but this is not unusual in geopolitics. Governments across the world support armed groups it finds useful to its aims, the US is no exception. We have supported armed groups across the world for decades, and will continue to do so if it benefits our interests.

For the most part, Iran does not seek major upheaval in the region. Stability is what is leans towards. Keep in mind, Iran has not invaded or attacked anyone in hundreds of years. It has never indicated a desire to militarily attack anyone, despite the ramblings of some political figures in the country. No serious plan has ever been proposed to whip Israel “off the map”, just empty rhetoric. Wars should not be waged over empty rhetoric.

Israelis should keep in mind too, the biggest instigators of an American war with Iran would be evangelical Christians, who have their own agenda. Their idea of “standing with Israel” is to welcome a war which they believe will usher in Armageddon. For those not familiar, Armageddon will see the death of every Jew (and non-Jew) who does not convert to Christianity. Does that really sound like a pro-Israel position?

The US is stretched thin, with a population fed up with warfare. Iran may not be Israel’s ally, but it has certainly proved that it is a rational actor in the world. Iran, despite the propaganda, is not being run by Nazi wannabees. I despise Iran’s theocracy, but the last thing it will attempt is a global war to destroy Israel.

The fact is, Israel has a greater interest in supporting this deal with Iran. This deal gives the tools necessary to monitor Iran’s activities and make sure it does not get a nuke. Despite the fact that the only nation in the region with nukes in Israel, it is widely agreed Iran shouldn’t get a nuke and this deal will help in that regard.

A war with Iran would devastate Israel more than anyone, and this suffering can be avoided.


  1. As a moral philosopher I will keep emphasizing the importance of concise nomenclature. We can’t afford to demonize all Christians. I’m an adiest, preferring the term “reasonable humanist” . Having no god doesn’t entitle me to alienate the new testament Christians whose morality is very similar to mine. Our best way forward as a nation is to clearly define opposition to old testament followers who justify pathelogical greed, misogyny ,racism and hatred by old testament standards. Pope Francis terrifies GOP oldies because he denounces all the sins they love. How surreal has the world become when an adiest with no god at all finds respect and admiration for the Catholic Pope?

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