To the Editor,
Re “Campaign for Congressional Backing of Iran Accord Begins” July 23. The real emotional intensity of the debate on the Iran deal comes not from its very positive non-proliferation aspect, but from its asserted weakening of the security of Israel, as raised insistently by Prime Minister Netanyahu. But, an important foundational element has been obscured.
The American public, and many in the press and the Congress, give no sign of realizing that over the years Israel’s Likud leadership has silently expanded the meaning of protecting Israel to become “protecting Israel with the West Bank and Israeli settlements.” Mr Netanyahu maintains his claim for U.S. protection while refusing American entreaties to negotiate the future of the West Bank and a two-state solution with the Palestinians.
Using his support on the domestic American scene, the Israeli Prime Minister works to impose on us unilaterally an obligation to defend the greater Israel, far beyond Israel proper. He hopes the Congress will accept this enlarged commitment, or ignore the difference, as he maneuvers for a rejection of the Iran nuclear deal.
It is the safer course for us, for Israel, and the entire Middle East for the Iran deal to be approved and for Israel to increase its long-term security by entering into serious peace discussions with the Palestinians.
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Berkeley, CA email@example.com