Israeli Democracy Questions War on Iran

Media Bares Sharp Splits Over Netanyahu and Barak's Plan

War Partners Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak have found unexpected opposition to their plan to attack Iran.
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War Partners Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak have found unexpected opposition to their plan to attack Iran.

By Larry Derfner

Published November 08, 2011.
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Against all that, Netanyahu’s silence and Barak’s denial count for nothing. If the U.S. won’t do it, they want to bomb Iran. The current exposure has stalled their plans, but no way are they giving up.

With the exception of Israel Hayom, the free-of-charge daily newspaper owned by Netanyahu patron Sheldon Adelson, the Israeli media has done its job beautifully by jumping on this outrageous story that two men, against overwhelming national and world opposition, have been marching the country and region to potential catastrophe. The political opposition finally woke up, with Kadima leader Tzipi Livni telling Netanyahu in Knesset to “pay attention to the heads of the defense establishment…also on the issue of the Iran threat.” New Labor Party leader Sheli Yehimovich warned Netanyahu loudly against any “megalomaniacal adventure.” Labor elder statesman and former defense minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer told the party faction, “Every citizen in the country has to be worried that these two fools, Netanyahu and Barak, are planning an attack on Iran.”

Even the hawkish ultra-Orthodox Interior Minister Eli Yishai was talking sense, telling activists in his Shas party that he’d been “losing sleep” over the possible consequences of an attack on Iran. Asked for specifics, Yishai said: “Imagine [attacks] from the south, the north, the center — they have short-range and long-range missiles. In our estimate, 100,000 missiles and rockets.”

In all, this is what’s called vibrant democracy. Letting Netanyahu and Barak do their thing while everybody else shuts up in the name of national security, which many in the government are now calling for, is what’s called totalitarianism. For now, at least, vibrant democracy is winning. And so is sanity.


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