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Friday, August 29, 2008
'Israel reaches strategic decision not to let Iran go nuclear'

'Israel reaches strategic decision not to let Iran go nuclear'
JPost.com Staff , THE JERUSALEM POST Aug. 29, 2008
www.jpost.com
/servlet/Satellite?cid=1219913194872&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Israel will not agree to allow Iran to achieve nuclear weapons and if the
grains start running out in the proverbial egg timer, Jerusalem will not
hesitate to take whatever means necessary to prevent Iran from achieving its
nuclear goals, the government has recently decided in a special discussion.

According to the Israeli daily Ma'ariv, whether the United States and
Western countries will succeed in toppling the ayatollah regime
diplomatically, through sanctions, or whether an American strike on Iran
will eventually be decided upon, Jerusalem has put preparations for a
separate, independent military strike by Israel in high gear.

So far, Israel has not received American authorization to use US-controlled
Iraqi airspace, nor has the defense establishment been successful in
securing the purchase of advanced US-made warplanes which could facilitate
an Israeli strike.

The Americans have offered Israel permission to use a global early warning
radar system, implying that the US is pushing Israel to settle for defensive
measures only.

Because of Israel's lack of strategic depth, Jerusalem has consistently
warned over the past years it will not settle for a 'wait and see' approach
and retaliate in case of attack, but rather use preemption to prevent any
risk of being hit in the first place.

Ephraim Sneh a veteran Labor MK which has left the party recently, has sent
a document to both US presidential candidates, John McCain and Barack Obama.
The eight-point document states that "there is no government in Jerusalem
that would ever reconcile itself to a nuclear Iran. When it is clear Iran is
on the verge of acquiring nuclear weapons, an Israeli military strike to
prevent this will be seriously considered."

According to Ma'ariv, Sneh offered the two candidates the "sane, cheap and
the only option that does not necessitate bloodshed." To prevent Iran's
nuclear aspirations, Sneh wrote, "real" sanctions applied in concert by the
US and Europe is necessary. A total embargo in spare parts for the oil
industry and a total boycott of Iranian banks will topple, within a short
time, the regime which is already pressured by a sloping economy and would
be toppled by the Iranian people if they would have outside assistance.

The window of opportunity Sneh suggests is a year and a half to two years,
until 2010.

Sneh also visited Switzerland and Austria last week in an attempt to lobby
those two states. Both countries have announced massive long-term
investments in Iranian gas and oil fields for the next decade.

"Talk of the Jewish Holocaust and Israel's security doesn't impress these
guys," Sneh said wryly.

Hearing his hosts speak of their future investments, Sneh replied quietly
"it's a shame, because Ido will light all this up." He was referring to Maj.
Gen. Ido Nehushtan, the recently appointed commander of the Israeli Air
Force and the man most likely to be the one to orchestrate Israel's attack
on Iran's nuclear facilities, should this become the necessity.

"Investing in Iran in 2008," Sneh told his Austrian hosts, "is like
investing in Krups Steelworks in 1938, it's a high risk investment." The
Austrians, according to Sneh, turned pale.

In related news, Israel Radio reported that Iran has finished installing an
additional 4,000 centrifuges in the Natanz uranium enrichment facility. The
Islamic Republic also announced it will install an additional 3,000
centrifuges in coming months.

The pan-Arabic Al Kuds al Arabi reported Friday that Iran has equipped
Hizbullah with longer range missiles than those it had before the Second
Lebanon War and also improved the terror group's targeting capabilities.

According to the report, which The Jerusalem Post could not verify
independently, Hizbullah would begin a massive rocket onslaught on targets
reaching deep into Israel's civilian underbelly in case the Jewish State
would launch an attack on Iran.

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