Dr. Joe TuzaraThe writer was clinical research-physician-general surgeon for Saudi Arabian, Philippine and American healthcare systems and is currently an American freelance writer as well as op-ed contributor.
As U.S. and Israeli officials talk publicly about the prospect of a military strike against Iran's nuclear program, the Los Angeles Times reported that the latest U.S. intelligence report indicates Iran is pursuing research that could enable it to build a nuclear weapon, but that it has not sought to do so.
Until quite recently, an alarming new intelligence emerged from intercepted communications of Iranian officials discussing their nuclear program raised concerns that the country's leaders had decided to revive efforts to develop a weapon, the New York Times reports.
Earlier this month, Netanyahu and Obama agreed that the end goal must be to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and that there cannot be any containment of a nuclear Iran.
At the crucial White House meeting, Netanyahu made it clear Israel will go it alone if it decides military action is necessary.
Here are the seven reasons why Israel should preemptively attack Iran this year:
Iran as a de facto nuclear state
First, and foremost, a nuclear-armed capable Iran would drastically change the geopolitical landscape in the volatile Middle East immensely complicating the risks to Israel and the threat to U.S. national security. Why?
For better or worse, there is no doubt that the prospect of escalating tensions is heightened significantly in the cascade of nuclear proliferation to Iran's proxies, Hamas, Hizbullah, Venezuela and Arab Gulf states wanting to go nuclear.
In addition to its suspected nuclear-weapons program Iran owns vast stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, according to Iran Watch.
Israel and America are both far more concerned about Iran's stepped-up enrichment of high grade uranium in an underground bunker in Qom and Natanz, than the failure of the UN nuclear watchdog, in a setback likely to increase the risk of confrontation with the West.
"Israel must be wiped off the map"
Unless the consequences of inaction truly are existential, given the potentially disastrous outcome of the controversial remark by the Iranian president - a unilateral preemptive strike against Iran's nuclear program in Israel's self-defense would be fully justified.
Longstanding economic sanctions - that doesn't bite
Despite an increasingly stringent U.S. and European Union's economic sanctions, Israel faces a dilemma. In the report by the Israeli-based news DEBKAfile, India has reportedly agreed to pay Tehran in gold for the oil it buys, in a move aimed at protecting Delhi from U.S.-sanctions targeting countries who trade with Iran.
Adding insult to the injury, the U.S. government recently said Iran has purchased 180,000 tons of U.S. wheat, which reopened grain trade ties between the two countries embroiled in a stand-off over Tehran's nuclear ambitions, according to Reuters.
While Israel is confronting the uncertainties of containing and deterring a non-nuclear Iran, no one knows, however, whether sanctions will bite sufficiently to alter the course of Iran's nuclear program.
Emergence of Iran, Hamas and Hizbullah suicide states
According to the Middle East Quarterly publication of "Iran's Suicide Brigades", the Iranian regime continues to embrace suicide terrorism as an important component of its military doctrine. The goal of Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah which Obama does not understand remains Jewish extermination.
As Israeli and American intelligence agencies have also warned, Iran has a network of agents and supporters surrounding Israel and inside the United States.
In Obama's worldview, an Israeli military strike against Iran is a test of his outreach to the Muslim world and a threat to his re-election campaign.