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Will Israel Attack Iran?
By Ray Hanania
The last time Israel launched a major assault against a Middle Eastern country, they used the American presidential elections as a cover.
It’s a lesson that should have the tyrants in Iran concerned.
In 2008, Israel and Hamas had come to an agreement called the “Lull,” an effort to end missile and rocket provocations between the two entities.
At the time, Israel was seeking to isolate the political leadership in Hamas, trying to bolster the strength of the secular Palestinian government in Ramallah in the West Bank.
But as it became clear that Barack Obama was going to win the election — all the polls predicted Obama would defeat his Republican opponent John McCain — the Israelis decided that then might be their only chance to destroy Hamas before Obama, whom many viewed as a closet Muslim, took power.
The irony was that until Nov. 4, 2008, the presidential election day in America, Hamas had lived up to its word not to fire rockets into Israel. More importantly but often ignored in media coverage, Israel had refrained from firing rockets into the Gaza Strip.
Until this day, one-sided pro-Israel activists insist the problem in Palestine and Israel is that Hamas fires rockets at civilian cities in Israel. And they ask the politically charged and exaggerated questions, “What would you do if your neighbor fired rockets at your citizens?”
Of course, no one in American or Israeli government or media ever mentions the fact that oftentimes, the first missiles to be fired come from Israeli helicopters that target Palestinian civilians. The Israeli airstrikes embrace the illegal practice of extra-judicial killing or what most civilized countries call murder without trial.
Israel doesn’t have a death penalty except for non-Jewish Christians and Muslims. Their policy of extra-judicial killing helps them sidestep the international rule of law.
It’s a horrible crime and a violation of the Geneva Conventions, which Israel does not recognize, and of international law.
And on Nov. 4, 2008, after Hamas had for several months abided by the “lull” agreement with Israel, the Israelis decided that a Muslim-American President would tip the balance in favor of the Arabs against Israel. They had to destroy Hamas and do it as quickly as possible.
Israel continued the unprovoked attack against Gaza for several months until unilaterally ending the attack on Jan. 20, 2009, the day Obama was officially sworn in as president of the United States.
During the vicious Israel-provoked assault, Israeli forces committed the most heinous war crimes and intentionally targeted civilians.
A renown Jewish jurist from South Africa, Richard Goldstone, headed a United Nations inquiry into the war that concluded that Israel’s conduct during the war constituted war crimes.
Under intense international pressure, including from his own Jewish community, Goldstone retracted his conclusions two years later in 2011. But the damage to Israel was done, and the world got to see firsthand in a rare peek into Israel’s illegal conduct the criminal behavior of the Jewish state.
Thousands of Palestinian civilians had been butchered by Israeli soldiers.
Israel’s fears that Obama might champion the Arab cause and demand justice and fairness in the Israel-Palestine conflict appeared to materialize during his first year in office.
Obama made a major address from Cairo to the “Muslim world,” in which he spelled out a balanced approach to ending the conflict.
Little did he realize that not even the president of the United States can control the Israeli-bought-and-sold U.S. Congress, and the Congress did everything it could to thwart peace.
Israel doesn’t really want peace. They want the perception of peace. They want the world to think they want peace so they can use that false perception as a cover for their real goal to expel Christians and Muslims from the Holy Land and steal all of the remaining lands of Palestine. They have been doing it ever since Israel was created in 1948, and as long as they have the power of the United States on their side, they will continue.
So back to the original question. When will Israel attack Iran?
My guess is that Israel will be as deceptive now as it was in 2008. If Obama wins re-election, they will launch an immediate assault on Iran. If Mitt Romney, who is backed by Israeli billionaire Sheldon Adelson, wins the election, Israel’s generals will let the United States do the dirty work and attack Iran.
Why should Israel lose the lives of its soldiers when American soldiers are at their disposal, just as American resources and billions in funds are at their disposal and whim today?
I’m not defending Iran at all. The Iranian dictator Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a frightening tyrant, a despot and a dictator.
But when you look at the facts, Israel’s claim that Iran should be attacked because they are building a nuclear weapon begs the question, what about Israel’s nuclear weapons? Israel has more than 250 armed nuclear warheads, and they remain the single greatest nuclear threat in the Middle East.
In truth, would Iran drop a nuclear bomb on Jerusalem and risk destroying the al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock, two of Islam’s holiest shrines? Or might it be more likely that if any nuclear bombs are dropped, they will come from Israel against Arab and Muslim targets?
For all of Iran’s harsh, anti-Semitic and hateful rhetoric, it’s all just words. Iran’s misdeeds are no worse or better than those committed by Israel. Just ask anyone who lives in the Gaza.
Ray Hanania is an award-winning Palestinian American columnist. To find out more about Ray Hanania and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit www.creators.com.
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This post has already been read 2214 times!
Ray Hanania is an award winning political columnist and author. He covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).
Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, and at TheArabDailyNews.com, TheDailyHookah.com and at SuburbanChicagoland.com.
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.
His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania
Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com
Visit this link to read Ray's column archive at the ArabNews,com ArabNews.com/taxonomy/term/10906
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