Cite: Eiran and Malin, Israel’s Perception of a Nuclear-Armed Iran

Eiran, Ehud and Martin B. Malin. “The Sum of all Fears: Israel’s Perception of a Nuclear-Armed Iran.” Washington Quarterly 36.3 (2013): 77-89.

 

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/0163660X.2013.825551

 

Extract

Four do’s and four don’t’s for policymakers in the United States and beyond flow from this analysis:
First, don’t bet on Israel’s next move. The fears expressed in Israel’s domestic debate are real and rooted, but so are divisions over how to respond. It is anyone’s guess who will prevail in the struggle over how to respond to Iran.
Second, don’t believe everything you hear. Politicians make statements for many reasons. Not every comparison of Iran and Nazi Germany needs to be heeded. Although Israeli fears may be genuine, the Holocaust analogies are deeply flawed and not a sound guide to policy. Although Prime Minister Netanyahu does draw on Jewish history as a compass, he has also used the framing of threats (terrorism, Iran) as a tool to garner political support.
Third, don’t walk away. If Israel feels a growing sense of abandonment, it could cause an escalation of fears and precisely the kinds of responses that could be most destructive for Israel, U.S. policy, and the region.

Israel’s elected officials may favor an attack, but its military leadership shuns one.
Finally, don’t feed fear. Talk is not cheap. U.S. officials, particularly members of Congress, should stop echoing the worst Israeli hyperbole about Iranian capabilities and intentions. At the same time, it would help if Iranian officials stopped making ridiculous statements denying the Holocaust and declaring their desire to see the Zionist entity wiped from the pages of history. Israeli leaders should avoid boxing themselves into making unnecessary choices by giving voice to their deepest fears.
If policymakers avoid these pitfalls, what positive steps should they take to help rein in fears in Israel and across the region? First, the United States should quietly help Israel and its neighbors realize their common interests vis-à-vis Iran and build upon them—not so much to deepen Iran’s isolation but to enable coordinated action in resolving the stalemate with Iran. The United States could facilitate, for example, a quiet exchange between security officials from Israel and other regional players to clarify their respective approaches to the emerging security environment and to discuss the kinds of transparency and oversight measures that might ultimately provide reassurance about Iran’s nuclear intentions.
Second, the United States should continue to coordinate its policies toward Iran with Israel. Despite the reported tensions between President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu during the former’s first term in office, relations between the professional policymaking establishments of the two countries have never been closer; this coordination will continue to reassure Israel and to encourage Jerusalem to act with restraint.

Don’t bet on Israel’s next move; it is anyone’s guess.
Third, the United States should support cooperative frameworks which would allow the states of the Middle East to begin to discuss, face to face, principles of regional security. The proposal to convene a conference on a WMD-free zone in the Middle East may be a vehicle for initiating such discussions. The architecture for regional coordination and management of security in the Middle East does not exist today, and is difficult to imagine, but it will remain elusive unless the United States pushes like-minded states into discussions of the shared challenges they face. These discussions will eventually need to address the challenge of banning all weapons of mass destruction in the region.
Finally, and most urgently, the best way to address Israeli fears of Iran is for Washington to break the logjam in its bilateral relations with Tehran, enable Iran to clarify its past nuclear activities, accept negotiated limits on its nuclear activities, and move beyond the years of confrontation which have both undermined regional security and defined Israeli–Iranian relations.

 

Cite: Shaw, Middle East Nonproliferation. Toward a Zone of Inclusion

Shaw, Douglas B. “Middle East Nonproliferation. Toward a Zone of Inclusion.” Nonproliferation Review 19.3 (2012): 357-363.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10736700.2012.734184

Abstract

The Middle East is a crucial region for the global nonproliferation regime. In 2010, the state parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons proposed a conference on a Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction-Free Zone. The nuclear weapon-free zone model, on which this idea builds, has achieved important results in other regions, but faces especially stark challenges in the Middle East. However, the attempt to apply the boldly imaginative zone approach to the Middle East holds promise for building a more inclusive dialogue on nonproliferation and regional security.

Cite: Evron, Extended Deterrence in the Middle East

Evron, Yair. “Extended Deterrence in the Middle East.” Nonproliferation Review 19.3 (2012): 391-400.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10736700.2012.734186

Abstract

With the exception of Iran, no Middle Eastern state has an operating nuclear power reactor. Several states, including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Israel, Syria, Jordan, Turkey, and Egypt are considering constructing such reactors; some have even taken steps towards commencing nuclear power projects. There exist, however, considerable economic, technical, safety, and security challenges to achieving these goals, many of which are acute in the Middle East region. Regional and international cooperation on nuclear technology could not only help regional states meet their energy objectives, but it could also help to build trust among states as a basic step towards a future Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction-Free Zone.

Cite: Asculai, Nuclear Power in the Middle East: Risks and Opportunities

Asculai, Ephraim. “Nuclear Power in the Middle East: Risks and Opportunities for Regional Security.” Nonproliferation Review 19.3 (2012): 391-400.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10736700.2012.734187

Abstract

With the exception of Iran, no Middle Eastern state has an operating nuclear power reactor. Several states, including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Israel, Syria, Jordan, Turkey, and Egypt are considering constructing such reactors; some have even taken steps towards commencing nuclear power projects. There exist, however, considerable economic, technical, safety, and security challenges to achieving these goals, many of which are acute in the Middle East region. Regional and international cooperation on nuclear technology could not only help regional states meet their energy objectives, but it could also help to build trust among states as a basic step towards a future Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction-Free Zone.

Cite: Kaye, The Middle East WMD-Free Zone Conference

Kaye, Dalia Dassa. “The Middle East WMD-Free Zone Conference. A Reset for Regional Arms Control?” Nonproliferation Review 19.3 (2012): 413-428.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10736700.2012.734189

Abstract

This article reviews the origins and evolution of the Middle East weapons of mass destruction-free zone (WMDFZ) concept and the proposal for a 2012 conference on the subject, and explores new challenges and opportunities for regional arms control in the current regional environment. It suggests that new models may be necessary to revitalize regional arms control efforts. The establishment of a broad regional security forum could include, but should not be limited to, curtailing weapons of mass destruction through the zone approach. Even if the 2012 conference fails to materialize, or is limited to a one-time event, the proposal for such a conference has provided an important opportunity to rethink future options for a regional arms control and security process.

Cite: Kumaraswamy, Israel: The Non-Parallel Player

Kumaraswamy, P. R. “Israel: The Non-Parallel Player.” Strategic Analysis 36.6 (2012): 976-986.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09700161.2012.728866

Abstract

Political tensions and rivalry between Iran and Israel have cast a shadow over India’s bilateral relations with both these countries. While one offers energy security, the other provides military–security capability towards ensuring greater Indian influence in the Middle East. Conscious of their relative advantages and challenges, India has managed to maintain a fine balance in its relations with Iran and Israel. Despite the suspected involvement of Iranian citizens in the 13 February 2012 terror attack on the Israeli embassy vehicle in New Delhi, Israel could continue to be a marginal player in Indo-Iranian relations. The same, however, will not be true for the US, which seeks to limit and if possible change the substance and direction of Indo-Iranian relations.

Cite: Giraldi, Washington’s Iran Policy Options

Giraldi, Philip. “No Way Out: Washington’s Iran Policy Options.” Mediterranean Quarterly 22.2(2011):1-10.

 

URL: http://mq.dukejournals.org/cgi/content/short/22/2/1

Abstract

Washington is confronted by a number of policy issues relating to Iran, most prominently Tehran’s nuclear program and the country’s role in the region. There is no good US policy fix for dealing with the situation, but the regular invocation by Washington of a military option as a possible solution is not helpful in that an attack on Iran would not resolve any problems in the bilateral relationship and could well make the situation much worse. Negotiations offer the best option, but their success depends on a mutual willingness to compromise on fundamental issues, which has not hitherto been the case. A policy of containment could accept that Tehran might aspire to a weapon and regional hegemony while devising strategies to mitigate and control the threat resulting from those developments. There are flaws in every possible approach, and there is no good policy option for dealing with Iran.

New Publication: Primakov, Russia and the Arabs

Primakov, Yevgeny. Russia and the Arabs. New York: Basic Books (of the Perseus Books Group), 2009.

 

Keywords: Russia: Middle East Policy, USSR / Soviet Union, 1967 war, 1973 War, Six Day War, Yom Kippur War, Peace: with Egypt, Lebanon, Israeli-Arab Conflict, Israeli-Palestinian conflict, USA: Middle East Policy, Israel: Nuclear Weapons, Iraq, Iran: Nuclear Weapons, Yasser Arafat, Saddam Hussein

New Publication: Haggai Ram, Iranophobia

 

Ram, Haggai.  Iranophobia. The Logic of an Israeli Obsession.

Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 2009.

 

cover for Iranophobia

Keywords: Iran, Israeli-Arab conflict, politics, חגי רם, Haggai Ram, Israel, Nuclear Weapons, Strategy, Iran, Israeli-Arab Conflict, Holocaust, Israel: Foreign Policy, Israel and its neighbours, Israel: Europe relations, Israel: US relations, Israel: World Jewry relations, Iran: Jewry, Iran: Nuclear Weapons

URL: http://www.sup.org/rss/book_rss.cgi?id=15925