Monday, August 13, 2012
by Ray McGovern, August 13, 2012
"More Washington insiders are coming to the conclusion that Israel’s leaders are planning to attack Iran before the U.S. election in November in the expectation that American forces will be drawn in. There is widespread recognition that, without U.S. military involvement, an Israeli attack would be highly risky and, at best, only marginally successful.
At this point, to dissuade Israeli leaders from mounting such an attack might require a public statement by President Barack Obama warning Israel not to count on U.S. forces — not even for the “cleanup.” Though Obama has done pretty much everything short of making such a public statement, he clearly wants to avoid a confrontation with Israel in the weeks before the election.
However, Obama’s silence regarding a public warning speaks volumes to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The recent pilgrimages to Israel by very senior U.S. officials — including the secretaries of state and defense carrying identical “PLEASE DON’T BOMB IRAN JUST YET” banners — has met stony faces and stone walls......
Netanyahu gives every evidence of believing that — for the next 12 weeks — he is in the catbird seat and that, if he provokes hostilities with Iran, Obama will feel compelled to jump in with both feet, i. e., selecting from the vast array of forces already assembled in the area.
Sadly, I believe Netanyahu is probably correct in that calculation. Batten down the hatches."