Efraim Sneh, former Deputy Minister of Defense, who recently resigned from the Knesset and from the Labor party, in order to form the new “Strong Israel” party had an opinion piece in Ynet the other day. Oddly enough, it actually appears to make some sense.
The op-ed’s lead reads: “US efforts to prevent Iran strike by lavishing us with gifts come with a price.” Wow, speaking truth to power? By an Israeli politician?
I am generally not a fan of members (and former-members) of the Israeli left-wing establishment, but Sneh is right on target here.
The gist of the op-ed is that, in order to prevent an Israeli strike in Iran, America is bribing Israel with presents such as the early warning system, recently installed in the Negev. But, in Sneh’s words “it limits our freedom to act both operationally and diplomatically.” In return, America wants Israel to sit tight and basically ignore Iran, regardless of the existential threat a nuclear Iran presents to Israel.
American politicians love to brag about how much the U.S. helps Israel (’tis the season now), its ally, the only democracy in the Middle East, etc etc (and many other phrases coined by AIPAC). However, that is far from true – America only helps Israel insofar as the U.S. benefits from helping Israel. Such as making money for American defense corporations. So much for helping the American defense industry – Israel has not been approved to purchase defense systems that would improve the Israeli Air Force long-range capabilities. However, U.S. continues the sale of weapons to, and the training of Israel’s enemies. And what do we do? We shut up, lest we offend Uncle Sam.
Moreover, the Pentagon’s approval of the F-35s sale to Israel is worse than previously thought. “Israel has not yet been granted the option of installing Israeli-made systems in the plane.” Unbelievable. If Israeli politicians weren’t completely spineless, they would have taken the same stand as the U.K. did and would have “refused to purchase the F-35 before…granted the authority to use it.”
Yet It doesn’t stop there. Recently, the Israeli Air Force carried out a long-range exercise over the Mediterranean. Thanks to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who has come out against an Israeli strike in Iran, though, this was leaked. Thank you, friend.
This is the same country who gives us green and red lights to act in our self-defense. Why do we heed these “instructions”? If we are to be a sovereign nation, we need to act in our self-interest, and no one else’s. The only way to do so, as I have said in the past, is to be beholden to no one, which means accepting no bribes. Israel must cease to accept American money NOW.
Sneh ends with a strong warning: “The current government, as well as the next one, does not have the moral right to reconcile itself to a nuclear Iran…No compliance with external pressures will absolve it of the responsibility for a failure that is a thousand times worse than Golda [Meir] and [Moshe] Dayan’s rejection of Chief of Staff David Elazar’s request for a preemptive strike in the morning of Yom Kippur in 1973.”