Best-selling author and Harvard Professor Emeritus, Alan Dershowitz was recently on my radio program, the Price of Business, to discuss his latest book, "The Case Against the Iran Deal: How Can We Stop Iran from Getting Nukes?."
Dershowitz, who has long sat very close to the seats of power both domestically and with those in Israel, unleashed a scathing attack against the Obama administration for its naive decision to pursue such a deal.
Dershowitz argued that decades of isolation has actually worked very well at preventing Iran from getting nuclear bombs, and maintaining that is far more affordable than the billions the regime will receive through this nuclear deal. I asked the author, "is not the only thing that has stood between Iran and nuclear weapons money and doesn't this agreement make obtaining the money a reality for it?" He said, "absolutely," and went on to explain that the status quo is much better than entering into another agreement with a nation with a history of violating such things.
In fact, Israel has a record of violating 20 agreements with the West to date and there is no reason to believe it will improve its record going forward. He went on to say that, with the perimeters established by this deal, Iran may not likely have to cheat. Certain areas in Iran are off limits to inspectors and those that are subject to such require weeks of notification. Under these rules Iran can simply play a dangerous shell game of moving material and technology around the country, potentially leading to the fast track development of nuclear arms before the ink on the deal even dries.
He went on to describe the relationship between Iran, Israel, and the United States. He pointed out that the government of Iran believes that Israel would not exist or, at least, continue to exist, if it were not for the United States. That is why Muslim extremists describe Israel as the "little Satan" and the United States as the "big Satan," he said. If you remove the US -- "big Satan" -- out of the picture, there would be no problem with Israel, because it could not exist in such a dangerous world without the United States.
Dershowitz went on to discuss the fact that the safety of the US hangs in the balance. I pointed out in our conversation that roughly half of the world's Jewish population is in Israel and half is in the US, remove Israel (which would certainly be an objective with nuclear weapons, based on Iran's historical rhetoric) and then the new target would be the US itself. He agreed entirely and believes that the safety of the United States and much of the world is linked to the survival of Israel.
So we discussed this existential threat to Israel and I asked him what would Israel do if this deal goes into effect. Dershowitz argues that Israel is not as short sighted as the US and would be ready to do whatever was necessary to protect itself. He went on to say that such included Israel attacking Iran before the Islamic nation had a bomb developed. When asked why he thought they would do such, he stated that "I have known these leaders for decades" (including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu) and there is no way they would stand by and allow Iran to create the means to wipe out Israel. He went on to say that Israel has seen 6 million of its own people wiped out before in relatively recent history in the Holocaust and has no intention to ever allow that to happen again.
Dershowitz argues that policy makers have bit into a "bill of goods" which states that "any deal is better than no deal." Historically, the objective of Iran to eliminate the barriers between it and a nuclear arsenal, and simple common sense proves that this deal makes the US and the rest of the world decidedly less safe.