Came then U.S. peace candidate John Edwards. Keeping Iran from nuclear weapons "is the greatest challenge of our generation. ... To ensure that Iran never gets nuclear weapons, we need to keep all options on the table. ... Let me reiterate -- all options."
Wrote the Financial Times' Philip Stephens of Herzliya, "I gave up counting the times I heard the words 'existential threat' to describe Iran's nuclear program capability."
A few weeks back, according to UPI's Arnaud De Borchgrave, Netanyahu declared that Israel "must immediately launch an intense, international public relations front first and foremost on the United States -- the goal being to encourage President Bush to live up to specific pledges he would not allow Iran to arm itself with nuclear weapons. We must make clear to the (U.S.) government, the Congress and the American public that a nuclear Iran is a threat to the U.S. and the entire world, not only Israel."
Israel's war is to be sold as America's war.
The project is underway. According to Peter Beaumont, foreign affairs editor of the Guardian, Israeli media are reporting that the assignment to convince the world of the need for tough action on Iran has been given to Meir Dagan, head of Mossad.
Listening to the war talk, Gen. Wesley Clark exploded to Arianna Huffington: "You just have to read what's in the Israeli press. The Jewish community is divided, but there is so much pressure being channeled from the New York money people to the office-seekers."
The former Supreme Allied Commander in Europe was ordered out of ranks and dressed down by Abe Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League. But Matt Yglesias of American Prospect, himself Jewish, says Clark spoke truth: "(I)t's true that major Jewish organizations are pushing this country into war with Iran."
Yet is the hysteria at Herzliya justified? Consider:
Not once since its 1979 revolution has Iran started a war. In any war with America, or Israel with its hundreds of nuclear weapons, Iran would not be annihilating anyone. Iran would be risking annihilation.
Not only has Iran no nukes, the Guardian reported yesterday, "Iran's efforts to produce highly enriched uranium ... are in chaos." That centrifuge facility at Natanz is "archaic, prone to breakdown and lacks the materials for industrial-scale production."
There is no need for war. Yet, Israelis, neocons and their agents of influence are trying to whip us into one. Senators who are seeking absolution for having voted to take us into Iraq ought to be confronted and asked just what they are doing to keep us out of a war in Iran.