Time's Joe Klein Harsher on Israel Than Iran

So who died and made Time's Joe Klein the head of Mossad? Because clearly he is a better military intelligence expert than anyone in Israel, judging by his April 22 blog post on "Israel's Iran Game" at the magazine's Swampland blog (emphasis mine):

I have no doubt that Israel is--legitimately--freaked out by Iran, although not so much by the prospect of an Iranian bomb as by Iran's support for Hezbollah and Hamas. (The only plausible use of an Iranian bomb would be as a deterrent against Israel's own nuclear weapons.) But it seems clear that the Netanyahu government's wild overstatement of the Iranian threat, and its linkage to progress on the Palestinian issue, is a subterfuge to allow the continued illegal Israeli settlement of Palestinian areas on the West Bank, which will ultimately subvert a two-state solution.

Whatever should Obama do? Klein would be glad you asked, and even if you hadn't, he'd probably tell you anyway (emphasis mine):

It's time for President Obama to make clear, in no uncertain terms, that the U.S. favors a Middle East peace settlement similar to the one proposed by Bill Clinton in 2000: no right of return for Palestinians, Jerusalem as a shared capital, the restoration (more or less) of the 1967 borders and an American peacekeeping force in the Jordan River Valley. The idea that Israel can continue to slow-walk the process and, by continuing to seize Palestinian lands, create a new reality on the ground, needs to be vehemently opposed by the U.S. government.

Of course, it's kind of hard to get a two-state solution when the Palestinian Authority is divided into two regions, one of which is controlled by an Iran-sponsored terror network (Hamas), with no plans anytime soon of ripping to shreds its founding charter calling for the destruction of Israel.

As for Iran, which is actively funding terror operations against Israeli civilians, Klein's favored approach is decidedly less bellicose than his call for Obama to castigate the Netanyahu government (emphasis mine):

As for Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's latest anti-Israel rant seems to have increased the possibility that the Europeans will join us in raising economic sanctions if Iran doesn't fully comply with the IAEA non-proliferation regime. Obama's quiet diplomacy with the Russians and Chinese has increased the possibility that those countries will also send the message to Iran that a bomb-making program will have negative consequences. I'm not sure that any of this stop the Iranians form [sic] developing a bomb, but I remain convinced that if Iran does go ahead, a policy of strict deterrence and containment--perhaps including the Arab states threatened by Iran's aggressive posture--is far preferable to any sort of military action.

So let's review. According to Klein, Obama should publicly chide Israel and press it to make concessions which benefit an unstable political entity rife with Iran-funded terrorists. Meanwhile, the Obama administration should quietly work through a multilateral effort to beg and plead Iran to pretty please stop its nuclear program which he's "not sure" will "stop the Iranians" anyway.

Brilliant, Joe, brilliant.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters