Monday, April 19, 2010

Sudden Mideast Signs of Moderation

Without warning, Mideast politicians are suddenly promote moderation.

What is happening in the Mideast?

Iran announces a campaign of diplomacy with the U.N. to curb nuclear proliferation and moderately proposes that Israel join the NPT. Israeli Defense Minister Barak notes that Iran poses no existential threat to Israel. Meanwhile, the American Jewish Committee has found in its annual poll that over half of American Jews approve of Obama’s handling of U.S.-Israeli relations (Haaretz 4/19/10).

What, I wonder, might Iran be willing to offer in return for Israel’s agreement to renounce nuclear rogue status, confess, and sign up to the NPT requirements for transparency? This would not impact military isssues – Iran would still be nonnuclear and Israel would still dominate the Mideast with its nuclear strike force. But if Israeli and Iranian officials could meet face-to-face at IAEA meetings for technical discussions of how their respective nuclear establishments could be managed in a way that would reassure the world of their good intentions…

As a consistent voice of Mideast doom I frankly don’t know what to make of this, except that it underscores that amid all the hypocrisy and hysteria and special pleading, room for rational thought does indeed still exist. Of course, rational thought has existed all along among thinkers, but signs such as these from officials are something new.

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