Only several days remain for Israel to strike Bushehr

Israel has until the weekend to launch a military strike on Iran’s first nuclear plant before the humanitarian risk of an attack becomes too great, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton said Tuesday.

A Russian company is expected to help Iran start loading nuclear fuel into its plant on Saturday, after which an attack on the Bushehr reactor could trigger harmful radiation, which Israel wants to avoid, Bolton said. So unless the Israelis act immediately to shut down the facility, it will be too late.

“Once it’s close to the reactor … the risk is when the reactor is attacked, there will be a release of radiation into the air,” Bolton told “It’s most unlikely that they would act militarily after fuel rods are loaded.”

“Until that time, the position of the government of Israel — as the position of the Obama administration — is that all options will remain on the table,” he said, without commenting directly on Bolton’s remarks.

Though Iranian officials insist the reactor is for peaceful purposes, Bolton warned about the danger of the up-and-running reactor.

“What this does is give Iran a second route to nuclear weapons in addition to enriched uranium,” Bolton said. “It’s a very, very huge victory for Iran.”

He noted that the reactor gives Iran something that both Iraq and Syria were never able to achieve because their facilities were destroyed.

5 Reasons Why Meeting with Ahmadinejad is a Stupid Idea–even for Obama

Obama and Ahmadinejad

A report has surfaced in the British press indicating that President Barack Obama is set to meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. (Increasingly, the British press is playing the role of watchdog when it comes to the Obama administration since US “journolists” have become essentially messengers for the regime.)

In this case, as Obama promised in his presidential campaign, he is reportedly set to meet directly with the Iranian president. Readers may recall that during the campaign Obama spun this idea by claiming that he was “not afraid” to meet with Ahmadinejad.

This is a foolish concept.

Meeting with Ahmadinejad is a mistake on several levels:

1. Meeting with Ahmadinejad represents a poor risk/reward ratio. It is highly unlikely that anything positive will come out of such a meeting, since Iran has been lying about its nuclear intentions all along. On the other had, the Persians invented chess. The Iranians would no doubt dangle carrots in front of Obama, who, like Pavlov’s dog, would salivate at the thought of reaching a grand bargain with Iran. This would buy the Iranians time–and time is really all they need at this point to finish enriching enough uranium (in violation of an international treaty and in defiance of UN resolutions) to arm bombs.

2. Meeting with Ahmadinejad makes no sense from a practical political standpoint. The President of Iran has no authority over foreign affairs or national security. He is essentially the “mayor of the country,” responsible for domestic issues. The final authority over matters involving foreign affairs and national security lies with the Supreme Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, a ruthless man who took over from the infamous Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini at the time of his death in 1989. In fact, all the real power in Iran is in the hands of Khamenei, not Ahmadinejad. Ahmadinejad serves at the pleasure of the Supreme Ayatollah. The Supreme Ayatollah has to approve the candidates for president in the first place and, rest assured, no one opposed to Khamenei will ever get the opportunity to run, much less serve. You can also rest assured that, if Khamenei decided tomorrow morning that he didn’t like Ahmadinejad any more, Ahmadinejad would be on his way out very quickly, one way or another. In other words, Obama, the president of the most powerful nation in the world and the leader of the free world, is set to meet with a deputy, an underling, from a third-rate, rogue power. This will accomplish nothing, except to win more support for Iran in the Islamic world, where that support is not absolutely a sure thing.

3. Meeting with Ahmadinejad is an insult to victims of the September 11th terrorist attacks and their surviving families. On multiple occasions in the past, Ahmadinejad has suggested that the attacks were an “inside job,” the work of the US government, or Israel. He has also said that the casualty toll was exaggerated and that no Jews were killed in the attacks because they were warned ahead of time not to go to work that morning. What good will meeting with such an irrational individual do for the security of the United States?

4. Meeting with Ahmadinejad is an insult to victims of the Holocaust and their surviving families, as well as all veterans of the European Theater of Operations in World War II. On multiple occasions, Ahmadinejad has denied that the Holocaust occurred, or claimed that it was exaggerated. He has even hosted conferences and cartoon contests on this subject. Obama may as well have a beer with David Duke if he is going to meet with Ahmadinejad.

5. Meeting with Ahmadinejad is an insult to US soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen who have served in the War on Terror, particularly in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. Iran has provided training, arms and safe haven for insurgents in Iraq and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Keep these five factors in mind when and if Obama decides it’s a good idea to meet with Ahmadinejad.

Poll shows majority of Arabs view nuclear Iran in positive light

A new poll shows that the percentage of the Arab world that thinks a nuclear-armed Iran would be good for the Middle East has doubled since last year and now makes up the majority.

The 2010 Arab Public Opinion Poll found that 57 percent of respondents not only believe that Iran’s nuclear program aims to build a bomb but also view that goal positively — nearly double the 29 percent who thought so in 2009. The percentage of those who view an Iranian nuclear bomb negatively fell by more than half, from 46 percent to 21 percent.

But the Arab Public Opinion Poll’s findings on Iran stand in marked contrast to the stances of most Sunni Arab leaders, who fear the regional implications of an Iranian bomb.

“In my view, the Arab public position on Iran is largely a defiance vote or an ‘enemy of my enemy’ vote,” Mr. Telhami told the Washington Times.

Last month, The Times reported on unusually blunt remarks from the United Arab Emirates ambassador to the U.S., who said he favored airstrikes on Iran’s nuclear sites by U.S. or Israeli forces despite the consequences for the region.

“If you are asking me, ‘Am I willing to live with [the fallout from military action] versus living with a nuclear Iran,’ my answer is still the same: ‘We cannot live with a nuclear Iran,’“ Ambassador Yousef al-Otaiba said during a conference in Aspen, Colo.

A day earlier, the Times of London reported that Saudi Arabia had given Israel tacit approval to use its airspace in the event of an aerial attack on Iranian nuclear facilities. Officials from the kingdom vehemently denied the report, but most observers suspect that some Arab leaders would quietly cheer an Israeli attack, even if it generated riots in their capitals.

Iran repeatedly has denied that its nuclear program is devoted to anything but producing energy.

“There is no love for Iran in most of the Arab world,” Mr. Telhami said. “They fear Israel and U.S. foreign policy, so when we ask them, ‘Name the two countries that are most threatening to you personally,’ they identify first and foremost Israel and second the United States, and Iran is down on the list.

Obama’s Iran policy changes, thanks to the Saudis

The Israeli intelligence website DebkaFile has reported that Obama is now seriously considering an attack on the Iranian nuclear facilities. His change of heart is not, according to Debka, prompted by the Israeli Netanyahu — whose nation is most directly threatened by Iranian nukes — but by an ultimatum from King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, who told Obama that his nation could not tolerate Iranian WMD, and would develop its own if Iran was allowed to acquire them. In other words, Netanyahu’s threat of a Middle Eastern conflict that could devastate Israel and escalate to all-out nuclear war carried less weight with Obama than the far less severe consequences threatened by the Saudis. Nevertheless, their threat moved them to the head of the queue. We know that Obama doesn’t want a nuclear weapons arms race, but is he also afraid of offending the Islamic monarchs before whom he dutifully genuflects?

It is, finally, all of a piece. Obama once promised an even-handed approach to the Middle-Eastern conflict, but in practice his seeming neutrality has barely disguised a decidedly Pro-Arab and pro-Palestinian bias. Thus, without first taking serious steps to check Palestinian terrorism, he has pushed for the two-state solution that would inevitably lead to Hamastan, and the conversion of the West Bank into yet another launching pad for Katyusha missiles. In addition, Obama continually leans on Israel to sign a nuclear non-proliferation treaty that would cripple its major deterrent against an all-out attack by surrounding Arab nations. Smelling blood, those neighbors, now including the once-friendly Turkey, are becoming provocative and their terrorist residents are agitating for war. Angry because Israel would not stop building new housing for its growing population in Jerusalem, Obama went out of his way to publicly humiliate Netanyahu. He only relented and made nice when it became evident that his Israel-bashing was going to cost him many Jewish votes and much Jewish money.

Obama’s evident bias has been much noted and much discussed. The rationalizers and explainers usually refer to the influence of his radical base at a time when Israel has become the Left’s Little Satan. Others have pointed to his long-term associations with the noisily anti-Semitic Reverend Jeremiah Wright, as well as with his fellow Chicagoans, Rashid Khalidi and Ali Abunimah, both of them plausible academic propagandists for the Palestinian cause.