from LobeLog: News and Views Relevant to U.S.-Iran relations for August 20th, 2010:
New York Times: Mark Manzetti and David Sanger report that the Obama administration has â€œpersuadedâ€ Israel that Iran is at least one year â€” if not more â€” away from having the potential to build a nuclear bomb. (This is consistent with the â€œat least 18 monthsâ€ figure reported by Sanger and William Broad in January.) In the latest piece, an anonymous U.S. official said Iran was currently questioning how far to push its program: â€œThe argument is over how far to push the program, how close to a weapon they can get without paying an even higher price.â€
The Atlantic blog: In an interesting forum on Jeffrey Goldbergâ€™s recent piece on Israel and Iran, the Washington Institute for Near East Policyâ€™s Patrick Clawson writes that, â€œWashington and Jerusalem see eye-to-eye in their assessment of where Iran stands and how quickly it is moving forward.â€ He concludes that while this is the case, differing threat perceptions and military doctrines â€” the â€œPowell Doctrine of overwhelming forceâ€ vs. Israelâ€™s â€œmow the grass,â€ quick, incremental mentality â€” might cause Israeli and U.S. intentions to diverge again later this year.
The Jewish Week: The Jewish Weekâ€™s editorial board summarizes Jeffrey Goldbergâ€™s article on Israel and Washingtonâ€™s potential military response to Iranâ€™s alleged nuclear weapons program. The authors endorse the sanctions track but share Goldbergâ€™s doubt that Iran can be deterred from acquiring nuclear weapons. â€œâ€¦Goldberg told The Jewish Week on Tuesday that â€˜Iran loves nukes and will do anything to have them.â€™â€ The editorial concludes that, â€œFor now, we must do all we can in support of the administrationâ€™s efforts to convince Iran to end its nuclear program voluntarily. But Washington needs to address what happens when that fails.â€