FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

US Missiles for Israeli Nukes?

The United States apparently has fitted out the Harpoon missiles it previously supplied Israel to accommodate nuclear warheads. These missiles are carried on three German-built submarines, making a reality of Israel’s grandiose plan for a nuclear-triad force, a miniature replica of America’s land-air-sea nuclear force in a country with a total population smaller than greater Chicago. Perhaps more pertinent, the missiles’ nuclear capability extends a threat towards Iran, bringing home to its leaders the possible consequences of “going nuclear.”

A step like this, taken by either side during the Cold War, would have been regarded as a serious escalation in arms, but now it causes barely a ripple in the United States. There are, of course, signed obligations that American-supplied weapons are to be used only for Israel’s defense, yet these have been violated many times, most notoriously during the invasion of Lebanon–a bloody, aggressive war led by the very man who now leads Israel.

Iran almost certainly wants to become a nuclear power, and it has nothing to do with being “evil.” It is for all the reasons that Israel secretly went nuclear, for all the reasons that South Africa secretly went nuclear before the end of apartheid, and for all the reasons that North Korea has gone nuclear. When you have determined enemies, and especially when they include, as they do in Iran’s case, the world’s great power, nuclear weapons must appear reassuring.

This is certainly the case for North Korea, another country branded as “evil,” and Bush is directly responsible for destroying a framework of understanding and cooperation with that country established through years of hard diplomacy, all in the interest of bluster and demonstrating how tough he is. There have been many threatening words and activities aimed at North Korea under the Bush version of foreign policy, as for example significant changes being made to the deployment of American forces at North Korea’s southern border.

The United States has invaded and occupied Iran’s neighbor, Iraq, has pointedly designated Iran as “evil,” and during the long and vicious Iran-Iraq war, it supported the aggressor, Iraq, even to the point of shooting down an Iranian airliner in error without so much as a proper apology and disgracefully tolerating Iraq’s extensive use of chemical weapons. The older generation of Iranians must remember, too, that the United States overthrew their democratically-elected government and supported the Shah who for decades terrorized all who opposed him. Much of the excess of the Iranian Revolution sprang from grievances over that.

Of course, we have to put in the balance the so-called Bush Doctrine, a rather exalted-sounding expression for a crude threat against anyone suspected of wrong-doing by America’s narrow and paranoid reckoning, something that has sent shivers through much of the world and will almost certainly drive still others towards more sophisticated weaponry. My, what a contribution to peace and stability.

Israel launched an attack against Syria (again using those American weapons supposedly restricted to defense), claiming it was against bases harboring terrorists. The President of the United States almost welcomed this open act of war, whose stated reason remains about as well demonstrated as Iraq’s strategic weapons stockpile, but then Bush had talked around invading Syria himself before coming to understand into what a hornet’s nest he had heedlessly thrust his fist in Iraq.

Someone in Gaza has killed Americans. It may well have been an accident because it truly does not serve the interests of residents. One has to admire the restraint shown by Palestinians all these years since America has hurt them many times with unfulfilled promises and unbalanced policy, a situation now grotesquely pushed to extremes by Bush. Almost any brutal thing Israel does is an act for peace. The Palestinians are told even who their leader cannot be and are treated like wayward children by a President himself never elected to office.

Sharon’s concrete-monster wall, called a neighborly-sounding fence in the odd political language of Israel, continues abuilding, taking additional Palestinian land here and there as its millions of pounds of concrete are poured. The wall effectively serves as a giant tourniquet applied to the arteries of any future Palestinian state, but that almost certainly is the idea, a new and less violent approach to ridding the area of undesirable residents. Greater Israel remains a dream for many, but especially for the party in power and its key allies.

I just received an e-mail vividly reminding me of that. It was from an Israeli still dreaming about Arab states taking the Palestinians, even naming the places they might go, as though these economically-depressed places with some of the world’s highest birthrates could absorb about 3 1/2 million immigrants. In his dreaming there was no awareness that he truly was describing a form of ethnic-cleansing, no awareness that the hideous Nazis tried exactly same thing during the 1930s. Their effort to export Germany’s innocent Jews, to expel those their blind ideology insisted were a problem, failed. This man’s dream, too, cannot but fail, and God knows where that will take us.

JOHN CHUCKMAN lives in Canada. He can be reached at: chuckman@counterpunch.org.

 

More articles by:

John Chuckman lives in Canada.

Weekend Edition
July 20, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Atwood
Peace or Armageddon: Take Your Pick
Paul Street
No Liberal Rallies Yet for the Children of Yemen
Nick Pemberton
The Bipartisan War on Central and South American Women
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Are You Putin Me On?
Andrew Levine
Sovereignty: What Is It Good For? 
Brian Cloughley
The Trump/NATO Debacle and the Profit Motive
David Rosen
Trump’s Supreme Pick Escalates America’s War on Sex 
Melvin Goodman
Montenegro and the “Manchurian Candidate”
Salvador Rangel
“These Are Not Our Kids”: The Racial Capitalism of Caging Children at the Border
Matthew Stevenson
Going Home Again to Trump’s America
Louis Proyect
Jeremy Corbyn, Bernie Sanders and the Dilemmas of the Left
Patrick Cockburn
Iraqi Protests: “Bad Government, Bad Roads, Bad Weather, Bad People”
Robert Fantina
Has It Really Come to This?
Russell Mokhiber
Kristin Lawless on the Corporate Takeover of the American Kitchen
John W. Whitehead
It’s All Fake: Reality TV That Masquerades as American Politics
Patrick Bobilin
In Your Period Piece, I Would be the Help
Ramzy Baroud
The Massacre of Inn Din: How Rohingya Are Lynched and Held Responsible
Robert Fisk
How Weapons Made in Bosnia Fueled Syria’s Bleak Civil War
Gary Leupp
Trump’s Helsinki Press Conference and Public Disgrace
Josh Hoxie
Our Missing $10 Trillion
Martha Rosenberg
Pharma “Screening” Is a Ploy to Seize More Patients
Basav Sen
Brett Kavanaugh Would be a Disaster for the Climate
David Lau
The Origins of Local AFT 4400: a Profile of Julie Olsen Edwards
Rohullah Naderi
The Elusive Pursuit of Peace by Afghanistan
Binoy Kampmark
Shaking Establishments: The Ocasio-Cortez Effect
John Laforge
18 Protesters Cut Into German Air Base to Protest US Nuclear Weapons Deployment
Christopher Brauchli
Trump and the Swedish Question
Chia-Chia Wang
Local Police Shouldn’t Collaborate With ICE
Paul Lyons
YouTube’s Content ID – A Case Study
Jill Richardson
Soon You Won’t be Able to Use Food Stamps at Farmers’ Markets, But That’s Not the Half of It
Kevin MacKay
Climate Change is Proving Worse Than We Imagined, So Why Aren’t We Confronting its Root Cause?
Thomas Knapp
Elections: More than Half of Americans Believe Fairy Tales are Real
Ralph Nader
Warner Slack—Doctor for the People Forever
Lee Ballinger
Soccer, Baseball and Immigration
Louis Yako
Celebrating the Wounds of Exile with Poetry
Ron Jacobs
Working Class Fiction—Not Just Surplus Value
Perry Hoberman
You Can’t Vote Out Fascism… You Have to Drive It From Power!
Robert Koehler
Guns and Racism, on the Rocks
Nyla Ali Khan
Kashmir: Implementation with Integrity and Will to Resolve
Justin Anderson
Elon Musk vs. the Media
Graham Peebles
A Time of Hope for Ethiopia
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Homophobia in the Service of Anti-Trumpism is Still Homophobic (Even When it’s the New York Times)
Martin Billheimer
Childhood, Ferocious Sleep
David Yearsley
The Glories of the Grammophone
Tom Clark
Gameplanning the Patriotic Retributive Attack on Montenegro
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail