Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Ben-Zion Netanyahu and a Potential Israeli Attack on Iran

Ben-Zion and Benjamin Netanyahu

In the current issue of The Atlantic (here), Jeffrey Goldberg predicts a possible Israeli attack against Iranian nuclear facilities in the next 9 months to 3 years, if (a) the United States does not act first and/or (b) Iran does not back down from their effort to obtain the bomb.

Goldberg's article reminds me of two prior Atlantic articles, from five years ago or so.  In one, the writer predicted the next wave of terrorist attacks against the US (beginning, I believe, in Las Vegas casinos), and in the other the writer predicted a global economic collapse triggered by Fidel Castro's death. The economic collapse article did not get the details right, but it was a (more or less) prescient preview of what actually occurred to the global economy in 2008.

I think this kind of article is helpful in terms of provocatively forcing people to think about (and address) potential future crises.

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One of the fascinating parts of Goldberg's article is his profile of Benjamin Netanyahu's 100-year old father, Ben-Zion.

According to Goldberg, Ben-Zion is completely devoted to the defense of Israel (and the Zionist ideal) and a strong proponent of pre-emptive military action if necessary.  Goldberg thinks that Ben-Zion's psychological influence on his son is very strong (think George H.W. on W., but with the nation's existence at stake) and could, therefore, contribute to a decision to order a strike on the Iranian facilities.

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