Would a Palestinian State Stymie Iran's Plans?

(Ha'aretz) Ephraim Kam - Gen. David Petraeus has been the head of U.S. Central Command, responsible for the Middle East, since 2008. People who have met him say he is friendly to Israel. Last week, testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Petraeus said the hostilities between Israel and some of its neighbors pose a challenge to U.S. interests in the region. Petraeus did not blame Israel for the situation but simply discussed the problem and its repercussions. Petraeus painted a similar picture last year in front of the same panel, but this time his analysis was seen as part of the pressure that the Obama administration is putting on Israel, as a continuation of the linkage it is trying to create between progress in the peace process and its handling of the Iranian issue. Basically, it's hard to see how such progress would help block the Iranian nuclear threat. Iran would certainly not give up its goal of achieving a nuclear weapons capability, something that has nothing to do with the Palestinian question. The Obama administration had better not delude itself. The Arab street does not support America, even in those countries whose governments are friendly with Washington. An Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement will not solve America's problems with Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan or al-Qaeda. The writer is deputy director of the Institute for National Security Studies at Tel Aviv University.

2010-03-23 08:11:32

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