The United States approaches this issue as though it can control events, but Iran, Israel and other countries in the region will not wait for the stately processes of American diplomacy.
ian problem, time is running short and the United States is losing its ability to shape events. Other states will act if the U.S. does not. The Israeli source told us that a nuclear Iran would be an existential threat to Israel, and that Israel cannot allow the Iranians to have the bomb. “We take seriously their statement to wipe Israel from the map,” our source said. “Given our history we take it very seriously.”
Nor do we suspect Israel will be acting alone. Saudi Arabia faces its own existential threat from Iran. Tehran is seeking to undermine the legitimacy of ing the building blocks for nuclear weapons without actually assembling them. But that is a naïve suggestion; in fact it would be more destabilizing than actually having a working bomb, because Tehran would be under constant threat of attack with no credible response. Also dismissible is the idea that should Iran go nuclear the Cold War-era deterrence model would apply, with Israel and Iran achieving a sustainable balance of terror. This assumes of course that Iran’s millenarian mullahs are as rational as the Soviet Politburo, a risky assumption at best.