Report: Israel, US Discuss Excuses for Attacking Iran

Israeli Hawks 'Furious' at Panetta for Comments on War

by Jason Ditz, December 28, 2011

A report today is claiming that the Obama Administration is in secret talks with the Israeli government to figure out exactly what would constitute a good excuse for launching an attack on Iran.

The talks came after Defense Secretary Leon Panetta made comments suggesting that attacking Iran is something that the US and Israel “would regret,” apparently causing many top Israeli officials to react furiously and for Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren to file an official complaint with the Obama Administration.

Panetta followed up the speech with much more hawkish ones, apparently aimed at publicly placating Israel, but behind the scenes the administration has been seeking to clarify what exactly counts as a “red line” that would give the US and Israel the excuse to launch an attack.

Officially, of course, both sides would insist such an attack was about Iran’s nuclear program. But since both nations have been claiming Iran is within striking distance of acquiring nuclear weapons since the mid-1980s, the excuse isn’t going to really fly internationally, so both nations are hoping to settle on something which could be the “trigger” for the attack.

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