Friday, March 2, 2012

Israel Goes With Jack Nicholson Approach to International Relations

“Israelis are ready to accept a few weeks of bombing in their cities 
if they’re convinced they got what they wanted.”
-Eyal Gabai
Former Chief-of-Staff to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Sell crazy someplace else, we're all stocked up here
-Melvin Udall (Jack Nicholson)
As Good as It Gets (1997)

From MarketBeat:
Oil, Tough-Talking Israelis, And The Threat Of War
“Israelis are ready to accept a few weeks of bombing in their cities if they’re convinced they got what they wanted.”

So claims Eyal Gabai, who until recently was Director-General of the office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, speaking three days before his former boss meets with President Barack Obama to discuss the threat of Iran getting a nuclear weapon.

The message: retaliation from Iran for a pre-emptive Israeli strike would be a small price to pay. Israelis might be more used to violence than any other Western nation, but such bold statements from public officials are extremely rare – even after they’ve left government.

The challenge, for all of us, is to gauge whether such commentary represents mere saber-rattling. After all, it is not just the Iranians who use alarmist talk to pursue their interests.

There’s much at stake in the prospect of a unilateral, pre-emptive Israeli strike against Iran–world peace, of course, but also the risk of a major disruption to financial markets and of soaring oil prices, which are already hitting dangerous highs.

Gabai, who joined reporters and editors from Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal for a chat while visiting New York in his new role as managing partner of Israeli investment firm RGB Equity Friday, certainly made it sound like Israel is serious....MORE
When Gabai's former boss says stuff like "When we say never again we mean never again"* I hear Jimmy Buffett:

"If we weren't all crazy, we would go insane.
-Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes

*Address to a joint session of the U.S. Congress, May 24, 2011
Also Minister of Information and Diaspora Yuli Edelstein, address to the  European Parliament, January 24, 2012.

Those are Israeli F-15's flying over Auschwitz, September 4, 2003.

Sometimes though I think the Jews aren't talking crazy talk and aren't bluffing.