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‘Israel pushing US to attack Iran’

Published time: January 12, 2012 11:18
Edited time: January 12, 2012 22:58
A member of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's security team is seen on stage as Netanyahu speaks at the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington (Reuters / Jason Reed)

A member of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's security team is seen on stage as Netanyahu speaks at the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington (Reuters / Jason Reed)

Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev has said the threat of a US military attack against Iran, heavily supported by the US Israeli lobby, is escalating.

Patrushev, who served as Director of Russia’s Federal Security Service, the FSB from 1999 to 2008, believes the United States may get itself involved in yet another war, at least partially due to Israeli influence.

"There is a likelihood of a military conflict escalation, to which the Americans are being pushed by Israel," he said in an interview with Interfax.

Americans who identify themselves as Jewish (but not necessarily religiously) are estimated at 6,489,000 (2.2% of the population) according to the US Census Bureau. Yet despite these modest numbers, Israel enjoys what could be described as disproportionate influence in US politics due to lobbying groups like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

Some researchers argue that the US decision to invade Iraq, for example, was largely motivated by pressure from these pro-Israeli groups.

“There is little doubt that Israel and the Lobby were key factors in shaping the decision for war,” argue John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt in a working paper published by the London Review of Books. “Without the Lobby’s efforts, the United States would have been far less likely to have gone to war in March 2003.”

More recently, the Republican Jewish Coalition declined to invite Texas Congressman Ron Paul – a top Republican contender to run against US President Barack Obama in November – to its presidential candidates’ forum, citing his "misguided and extreme views."

Paul is a strong advocate for auditing the Federal Reserve, as well as ending America’s preoccupation with occupying foreign countries. He has also gone on the record as saying he would not support an attack on Iran, the only Republican candidate to make such a promise.

Paul told Iowa voters that he was against launching a preemptive strike on Iran because “they don’t threaten our national security.”

“If some other country thought they had to go to war with (Iran), that is their business,” he said, adding there is no proof Iran is building a nuclear weapon.

Despite the US mainstream media’s tendency to ignore Ron Paul, his “bring home the troops” message has found a receptive audience in the US, as many Americans are tired of watching their tax dollars fly out the window to fight foreign wars. Yet the US military juggernaut continues.

Just as the Bush administration's “democracy-building” rhetoric got Washington deeply involved in Iraq, Patrushev says the new occupants of the White House are looking to turn Iran into a “loyal partner.”

"At the moment, the US views Iran as its main problem,” he said. “They are seeking to turn Tehran, their enemy, into a loyal partner, and for that purpose to change the ruling regime there by any means.”

Russia, China, India and a number of other countries are making efforts to resolve the Iranian problem peacefully and amicably.

“The result of these efforts has so far been insignificant because neither the US, nor Iran, seem very keen on it, albeit for various reasons," the Security Council secretary says.

Various strategies – some obvious, others not – are being employed to end the showdown without resorting to violence.

“Economic sanctions are being applied, as is massive support for opposition forces, which can conduct a colored revolution there," noted the Russian Security Council secretary.

"Unfortunately, tensions around Iran are not easing," Patrushev concluded.

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