'Despite what he tells Israel, Obama won't attack Iran'

Wednesday, March 20, 2013 |  Israel Today Staff

One of the main topics of discussion during President Obama's visit to Israel will be the ongoing and mounting Iranian nuclear threat.

According to a diplomatic source cited by Israel's Ma'ariv daily newspaper, Obama will try to reassure Israel regarding the Iran threat, but the truth of the matter is that the American leader would never order a preemptive strike on the Islamic Republic.

"His ‘red line,’ according to which he’ll attack if the Iranians get a nuclear weapon or get very close, is fiction," said the source. "The gap between Israel and the United States regarding the ‘red line’ is enormous, and is not expected to shrink during the visit."

That view would seem to be supported by the fact that Obama appointed John Kerry and Chuck Hagel as his new secretaries of state and defense, respectively. Both men have been vocal opponents of using military force to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Just hours before Obama's arrival, a senior Israeli security official told Ha'aretz that the White House had already "prepared a pinpoint military option in the event that the United States decides to attack."

Some sources suggested that during his visit, Obama would make an informal promise to exercise a military option against Iran if diplomatic efforts and sanctions had yielded no results by October of this year.

In a pre-visit interview with Israel's Channel 2 News, Obama claimed that Iran was still more than a year away from being able to actually construct a nuclear weapon, an assertion that has been challenged by some Israeli officials.

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