Eye on Iran and Israel

"This autumn may be Israel's last and best chance to go after Iran's nuclear capability," Feldman wrote in the New York Times Magazine recently...

Bemis professor of international law Noah Feldman ’92, JF ’02, sees trouble brewing between Israel and Iran.

Given President Bush's practically unconditional support for Israel, and the potential for the United States's position to change with the next administration—particularly if Barack Obama is elected—"[T]his autumn may be Israel's last and best chance to go after Iran's nuclear capability," Feldman wrote in the New York Times Magazine recently.

His logic is elegant, if tortuous:

In the beady-eyed but inexorable logic of international security affairs, the Israelis know that Iran knows that it would be a bad move to go after the U.S. in retaliation for an Israeli attack. Any Iranian movement against U.S. assets would give President Bush just about the only domestically viable political excuse for bombing Iran that is possible to imagine. Because that would put Iran at war with the United States, not just Israel, Iran might choose to hold back. That likelihood, coupled with President Bush's visceral support for Israel, might be enough reason for the administration to tolerate an Israeli attack that did not too directly implicate the United States.

Feldman is the author of The Fall and Rise of the Islamic State. You can read the rest of his essay here.

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