TSA Threaten Media Outlets But Not Israelis
Do Israelis Support a Strike on Iran?
Some people abroad are less influenced by the rhetoric of politicians than are many citizens in the world’s most powerful nation. We trim, blend, and append two 2012 articles from (1) Politico, Feb 28, on Israel by S. Telhami (U Maryland and fellow at the Saban Center) and (2) Downsize Dispatch, Mar 13, on TSA by J. Babka (President, DownsizeDC).
by Shibley Telhami and by Jim Babka
Do Israelis support a strike on Iran?
With increasing signals that Israel’s government may be contemplating a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities, the United States and its European allies have made no secret of their opposition. But how do the Israeli people feel?
Only 19 percent of Israelis polled expressed support for an attack without U.S. backing while 42 percent endorsed a strike only if there is at least U.S. support, and 32 percent opposed an attack regardless.
This does not appear to be because of Israeli worries about potential American punishment. In fact, Israelis remain confident the U.S. would support them, at least diplomatically (38 percent), or join the war on Israel’s behalf (27 percent) -- even if Israel struck Iran without Washington’s approval. Only 15 percent expect reduced American support. What seems behind these attitudes is an assessment of the consequences of an Israeli attack.
A majority of Israelis polled, roughly 51 percent, said the war would last months (29 percent) or years (22 percent), while only 18 percent said it would last days. About as many Israelis, 44 percent, think that an Israeli strike would actually strengthen Iran’s government as think it would weaken it (45 percent).
Two-thirds of Israelis, meanwhile, believe Hezbollah would most likely join Iran in retaliation against Israel -- even if Israel did not strike Hezbollah forces. An additional 27 percent believe Hezbollah would join only if attacked.
What would be the outcome for Iran’s nuclear program? Only 22 percent of Israelis said a strike would delay Iran’s capabilities by more than five years, while an additional 31 percent said it would delay its capabilities by one to five years, 18 percent said it would not make a difference and 11 percent said it would actually accelerate Iran’s capabilities. In a similar poll I conducted (also with Dahaf) last November, 90 percent of Israelis expressed the view that Iran will eventually acquire nuclear weapons.
Since the Israeli public appears not fearful of losing U.S. backing if Israel strikes without a green light from Washington, these results are probably related to the lack of confidence in the Israeli government’s own assessment of the consequences of an attack.
Not surprisingly, what Obama and the Republican candidates are saying about Israel and Iran is often a lead story in Israel. No country matters more for Israel than the U.S. -- and no country gets more scrutiny in the Israeli press. So whom do Israelis want to see as the next U.S. president?
Overall, Obama led Santorum 33 percent to 18 percent; former House Speaker Newt Gingrich 32 percent to 25 percent; Ron Paul 32 percent to 21 percent; and tied Romney at 29 percent. It is noteworthy, that Paul performed slightly better -- but within the margin of error -- than Santorum, despite his strong opposition to a U.S. role in a military strike against Iran.
What does all this add up to? Contrary to the current discourse in our presidential elections, the Israeli public is neither enthusiastic about the prospect of war with Iran nor swayed by the seeming embrace of Israel by our GOP presidential candidates.
Israel has to live with the consequences of war and appears to take the U.S. assessment of these consequences seriously in forming its opinions.
With all the white noise surrounding the Iranian nuclear issue, the best service the Obama administration can provide -- certainly to American interests and the cause of peace but also to Israelis -- is to be faithful to the facts about what’s at stake if Israel strikes Iran.
To see the whole article, click here .
JJS: While many Israeli people respond rationally to threat, at least one American does, too. Meanwhile, do the people in power seek a war to justify spending so much public money on dealing with exaggerated terrorism?
TSA Thugs Threaten Media Outlets
Jonathan Corbett is suing the TSA for its unconstitutional body scanners and pat-down methods.
Corbett shows the ineffectiveness of the TSA's pornoscanners: "if you have a metallic object on your side, it will be the same color as the background and therefore invisible to both visual and automated inspection."
Even worse, the TSA issued threats against mainstream media outlets that wanted to interview Corbett. The TSA already violates the 4th and 5th Amendments, and now they're going after the 1st!
Corbett argues that traditional metal detectors and bomb-sniffing dogs would be more effective.
Now when people go to the airport, they're supposed to be deeply afraid of the nearly non-existent threat of terrorism. And they are treated like terrorists until they prove themselves to be innocent.
I believe the skies would be safer if we abolished the TSA altogether.
Working with insurance companies and private security firms, airports and airlines would devise effective ways to protect the safety of flights without invading the privacy of passengers. A free market in airline security would mean security firms would compete with each other in cost, effectiveness, and, something the Federal State is chronically unable to deliver, customer satisfaction.
To see the whole article, click here .
JJS: Airport detectors seem to be part of the massive military/industrial complex that General and President Eisenhower warned Americans about.
Editor Jeffery J. Smith runs the Forum on Geonomics and helped prepare a course for the UN on geonomics. To take the “Land Rights” course, click here .
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