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September 20, 2009
Brzezinski fantasizes about US shooting down Israeli planes
Typical liberal. He would never dream of making war on our real enemies, only our allies.
The idea that we should intercept Israeli warplanes on their way to bomb Iranian nuclear sites and shoot them down is not really new. What's different is that is coming from an acknowledged advisor to the current president of the United States and a former National Security Advisor to another.
I would add that Brezinksi would not have made such an outrageous statement unless the White House knew he was going to make it. I would also add that it is something we would never do in a million years but saying we are thinking about it pleases the Iranians and Arab governments in the region.
Michael Goldfarb of The Weekly Standard found the quote buried in an interview Brezinksi did with the Daily Beast:
DB: How aggressive can Obama be in insisting to the Israelis that a military strike might be in America's worst interest?The "Liberty in reverse" refers to the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty during the Six Day War in 1967. Liberty was a "technical research ship" chock full of electronic equipment and was probably - no one knows for sure - monitoring Israeli communications. Also unknown is exactly why the Israelis decided to attack the clearly marked ship of their best ally. In 2003 , the NSA responded to an FOIA request and released a couple of tapes that seem to buttress the Israeli official explanation that it was a tragic case of mistaken identity. However, according to survivors there are at least two other tapes - from the Liberty herself - that might contradict the Israelis.
The fact is, most US government officials never believed the official Israeli explanation and indeed, eyewitness accounts from crew members include the fact that Israeli jets overflew the ship several times before the attack - low enough to identify the Liberty as an American ship. It's a real "Fog of War" story that will probably never be resolved to everyone's satisfaction.
So is Zbig one of these American officials who can't let the incident go and want to visit the same kind of treatment on the Israelis? Only this time, there wouldn't be any doubt whatsoever that we would be deliberately shooting down the planes of an ally.
Contrary to Brezinski's half-hearted disclaimer that no one wishes for such an outcome, there are plenty on the left who would delight in a pitched battle between the United States and Israel. Democrats in Congress routinely support resolutions affirming Israel's right to take whatever steps it deems necessary to assure its own national defense. And Obama has at least paid lip service to the concept. But hostility to Israel among the rank and file is very real on the left -- and among "realists."Is Obama confident enough in a 2012 reelection victory that he would throw American Jews under the bus and live with the consequences? Not only can the Jewish vote make the difference in Florida, but there are several other states where a combination of Jews and evangelical Christians - who would be incensed over military action against the Israelis and might turn out in huge numbers to defeat him - would cost the president electoral votes. And there would be repercussions in his own party as dozens of pro-Israel Democrats would find it imperative to distance themselves from such madness.
This is why I don't see the president following through with such a threat. In my view, he sent Brezenski on an errand to be interviewed in an obscure publication and make this extremely controversial statement for the benefit of the Iranians and Arab governments. He can now emerge and, statesmanlike, deny that America has any such plans afoot. But the message would have been sent - and heard in Tel Aviv, Damascus, and Tehran.
One more point; I think this makes an Israeli strike on Iran even more probable. The more Obama tries to isolate Israel, the more the Israelis are made aware that they cannot depend on America anymore and must act without regard to American interests in the region.
It takes a special kind of incompetence to anger your allies, appease your enemies, and leave the rest of the world looking at you with contempt.
Congratulations, Mr. President. You hit the trifecta of stupidity.