Commentary by Jonathan G. Leslie,fear and uncertainty: Israel and Iran Threat Stories(Londen: Hearst Corporation, 2022).
MUNICH (Informed Review special issue; feature film) – Jonathan G. Leslie writes on the last page of his book Fear and Insecurity: The Israeli and Iranian Threat Narrative, "Words have consequences." He believes Israel's dominant narrative on Iran, drawn from official statements and media reports, creates an exaggerated picture of Iran's threat to Israel.Leslie is an adjunct professor and advisor at the Center for Security Studies at Georgetown University in Washington.
There is no denying that Iranian leaders often espouse anti-Semitic tropes. One of the most scandalous examples was that of then-President Mahmoud Ahmadinejadto explainIn 2009, the Holocaust was a myth. In addition, Tehran supports groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas, which often target Israel. Direct verbal threats against Israel are also common in speeches by Iranian officials. Last month, Iranian President Ibrahim Rashidto pronounceThe slightest Israeli action against Iran would "lead to the destruction of Haifa and Tel Aviv," the speech said.
Yet the actions of Iranian leaders do not substantiate what Leslie calls the "Iran Threat Theory." This view portrays Israel as constantly on the verge of falling victim to the fanatical Iranian regime. This claim largely contradicts the fact that Israel is a wealthier and more militarily powerful state than Iran. Israel not only possesses nuclear weapons, but it has also long been a close ally of the United States, the world's largest military power. Iran has graduallyaccumulationWeapon-grade nuclear material after the Trump administrationresignIn May 2018, from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to curtail Iran's nuclear program. However, Iran remains a non-nuclear state. And for all of Raisi's effortsSettleFar from a partnership with the West, neither Russia nor Chinawill provideIran The level of support Israel receives from Washington.
Leslie convincingly points to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a key figure in understanding the rise and intensity of the Iranian threat narrative. There were signs of what to expect. In 1996, Shimon Peres became the first Israeli prime minister to publicly compare Iran to Nazi Germany, the authors explain. But it was Netanyahu, especially after his return to power in 2009 – he was prime minister from 1996 to 1999 – who “transformed the Iranian threat from a technical security challenge to a moral crusade. evil between the two countries," Leslie noted.
In an academic essay on Netanyahu's populist foreign policy, Leslie refers to the Israeli Prime Minister's explanatory speech at the 2014 American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference. In his address to the pro-Israel lobby in the United States, Netanyahu the "humane" and "compassionate" state of Israel with representing the world's "power for good" and the "power of terror" embodied by Iran and its agents. , they are "covered in blood".
There are several reasons why Netanyahu has been so successful in pushing his story about the threat from Iran. First, "it is much easier to maintain a mobilized electorate against a problem or enemy than to implement a policy solution."Second, the fact that the nuclear threat is invisible – unlike, say, rockets fired from the Gaza Strip – makes it more difficult for a wider public, often ill-informed about the subject, to question its veracity . Third, and just as importantly, Netanyahu has always been cavalier about the truth. This can be seen in 2012, when the Prime Minister of IsraelTo announceIran is still a year away from building a nuclear bomb. Not only did the warning fail to materialize more than ten years later, but documents later leaked outshowAs early as 2012, Israel's secret service, the Mossad, was well aware that the evidence did not support Netanyahu's claims.
I'm not sure how much Netanyahu really believes in the Iranian threat. More clearly, Leslie explained, the narrative he built around a perpetually threatening Iran proved helpful. Internationally, it has diverted attention, albeit only to a certain extent, from Israel's occupation of Palestine. Internally, it gave Netanyahu a platform "to position himself as a strong leader who deserves voters' support."
The Iran threat narrative is based on the idea that Iran is about to have a nuclear bomb and, more importantly, that those in power in Tehran are so fanatical that if they could use a nuclear weapon, they would use it recklessly. after all, it is already therenine nuclear powersin the world. The point of the Iranian threat narrative is that Iran is different. Israeli media reports have long portrayed Iran's leaders as "irrational and lacking in self-control".It seemed clear to Netanyahu that the Islamic Republic "will always be led by 'mads' or 'rogues,'" Leslie wrote.
Paradoxically, Netanyahu's actions have made the Iranian threat all the more real. The conservative leader has gone to great lengths to lobby Trump against the JCPOA. As Leslie describes, Netanyahu quickly realized that "the best strategy to push Trump into action was to appeal to his ego".The JCPOA is an international agreement signed by Obama, and the Israeli Prime Minister has convinced Trump that he can negotiate a better deal or lead the US in a confrontation with Iran. Netanyahu's tailor-made approach to Trump also includesaccessto TV programfox and friends, the former president's favorite TV show, and Twitter's offensive on the deal, he knows full well that Trump is an avid user of the social platform.
In May 2019, a full year after Trump left the JCPOA, TehranRestartingSome nuclear activities have been suspended in accordance with the agreement. Iranian leaders are tired of waitingrenegotiateAgreement or feasible EUmechanismThis would guarantee the economic benefits of the deal even without the participation of the United States. In recent years, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has gradually gained access to Iranian nuclear facilitiesReduce, parallel to Iran's growthUranium enrichment.conservative electionsparliament2020 in hardline Raisi aspresidentIn 2021, the situation is even more complicated.
One of the most original aspects of Leslie's research is his examination of how often Iran is mentioned in speeches by leading Israeli politicians. In 2010, Netanyahu's first full year as prime minister after a decade in power, the Likud leader cited Iran twice as often as his predecessor, Ehud Olmert, in 2008, his last full year as prime minister. This supports Leslie's claim that Netanyahu has changed the rules of the game regarding Iran as an internal threat to Israel.
But more importantly, Netanyahu mentioned Iran twice as often in 2013-2015 compared to 2010-2012. Leslie noted that "Netanyahu has, on average, attacked Iran more in his speeches and public statements under Rouhani than under Ahmadinejad."Moderate Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has enlisted the international community in overseeing Iran's nuclear program, but it seems counterintuitive that he is seen as a greater threat than his belligerent predecessor. But there is good reason to believe that Netanyahu is more concerned about Iran's reintegration into the international community than about a nuclear-armed Iran. His attempts to blow up the JCPOA proved that point.
Leslie aptly points out some recurring themes in Israel's depiction of Iran. In that sense, his research is increasingly popping upjerusalem messageThe combination of "ayatollah" and "mullah," two simple but commonly used terms to denote Iran's ruling class, is particularly illuminating. Still, it would be interesting to find in the book an analysis of how smearing Iran is understood within the wider discourse in Israel and the West, which is rife with Orientalist beliefs. With the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and the beginning of President George W. Bush's "War on Terror," those words took on new force.if of have angryIn a 2002 speech, he mentioned Iran alongside Iraq and North KoreaBook"Reporting on Islam: How the Media and Experts Determine How We See the Rest of the World," published in 1981, Edward Said analyzed how the American media has resorted to Orientalist tropes after reporting on hostage crises. The US Embassy in Tehran was opened in 1979 by followers of Khomeini.
In "Fear and Insecurity," Leslie convincingly demonstrates that words can make a difference, and that those effects can be profound. Given that most writing on Iran-Israel tensions focuses on the physical dimensions of the confrontation, the author's focus on discourse, which he deftly dissects, is a very refreshing perspective. During the brief hiatus between Netanyahu's fifth and sixth governments, which runs from June 2021 to December 2022, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Yair Lapid met in On the Iran issue, which pays close attention to the Likud party's leadership line. Everything therefore seems to indicate that the Iranian threat theory has gained a firm foothold.
Jonathan G.Leslie,Fear and Uncertainty: Threat Narratives in Israel and Iran(Londen: Hurst and Co., 2022), bld. 3. 225.
Ibidem, blz. 31
Jonathan G. Leslie, "Netanyahu's Populism: An Overlooked Statement of Israeli Foreign Policy," vol.SAIS International Affairs Review37, nee. 1 (2017): 77.
Leslie Cheung,fear and uncertainty,Page. 18.
Ibidem, blz. 152.
Ibidem, blz. 118
Ibidem, blz. 157
Ibidem, blz. 187
Ibidem, blz. 169
Israel and Iran's militaries are neck and neck
According to the GFP index, although Iran takes the spot just ahead of Israel, the power index ratings for the two countries are neck and neck - Israel with a rating of 0.2757, and Iran with a rating of 0.2712.
Israel supported Iran during the war so that Iran could provide a counterweight to Iraq; to re-establish influence in Iran which Israel lost with the overthrow of the shah in 1979, and to create business for the Israeli weapons industry.Are Israel and Iran close to war? ›
WASHINGTON — Escalating tensions between Iran and Israel have brought the two countries to the verge of war. While experts disagree on the probability of military conflict between the Jewish state and the Islamic Republic, they agree that the present moment is rife with potential pitfalls.Who are Iran's allies? ›
Syria. Syria and Iran are strategic allies. Syria is often called Iran's "closest ally", the Arab nationalism ideology of Syria's ruling Baath party notwithstanding.Is Israel more powerful than USA? ›
Israel is the 10th most powerful country globally, dominating headlines, preoccupying policymakers, and shaping global economies, according to U.S. News's annual list for 2022. The United States came in first, followed by China and Russia for the top three.Is Israel the strongest army in the world? ›
Israel is one of the 10 most powerful, politically influential, and militarily strong countries in the world, according to a roundup for 2022 published by US News & World Report.Why don't Israel and Iran like each other? ›
After the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Iran severed all diplomatic and commercial ties with Israel, and its theocratic government does not recognize the legitimacy of Israel as a state.Can Israelis go to Iran? ›
Answer: Due to the rules dominating over Iran, entry to Iran will be refused for citizens of Israel and travelers with any evidence of visiting Israel. Israel is the only county included in this rule and other countries even America are excluded.Was Iran a US ally? ›
In the first three weeks, Washington gave Iran $68 million in emergency aid, and an additional $1.2 billion over the next decade. In this era that ensued, until the fall of the Shah in 1979, Iran was one of the United States' closest allies.Does Israel have nuclear weapons? ›
Israel is believed to have nuclear second strike abilities in the form of its submarine fleet and its nuclear-capable ballistic missiles that are understood to be buried deeply enough that they would survive a pre-emptive nuclear strike.
Israel – Exercise increased caution
Exercise increased caution due to terrorism and civil unrest.
Until the 2003 Iraq War
Following the war, Iraq was the only Arab country not to sign a ceasefire agreement with Israel, and the two countries have technically been in a continuous state of war since 1948.
The biggest rivalry in the Arab–Iranian conflict is between Saudi Arabia and Iran, who have been waging a heavy proxy war against each other since the late 1970s.Which country is Iran friendly to? ›
China and India have also emerged as friends of Iran; these three countries face similar challenges in the global economy as they industrialize, and consequently find themselves aligned on a number of issues. Iran maintains regular diplomatic and commercial relations with Russia and the former Soviet Republics.Why is the US not allied with Iran? ›
As a result of the Iranian takeover of the American Embassy on November 4, 1979, the United States and Iran severed diplomatic relations in April 1980. The United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran have had no formal diplomatic relationship since that date.Is there a U.S. Army base in Israel? ›
The United States has stored military equipment in Israel since the early 1990s and may store additional equipment in Israel when withdrawing from Iraq. Currently the only active foreign military installations on Israeli soil are American bases, including an AN/TPY-2 early missile warning radar station on Mt. Keren.Does Israel get weapons from the US? ›
Every year, Israel receives $3.3 billion in foreign military financing from the U.S. In addition to getting more U.S. taxpayer-funded weapons than all other countries combined, Israel also is singled out for special treatment that makes this allocation even more valuable–it receives its allocation in unique ...How many U.S. troops are in Israel? ›
The US has about 35,000 troops in the region now, a far cry from a decade and a half ago when the US had nearly 200,000 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan alone. But this exercise is intended to show the ability of the US to move large forces into the region in a short period.Who has the most advanced military in the world? ›
1. United States Of America. US Military has the biggest defence budget in the world. They are known for their most powerful Air Force on the planet, named as United States Air Force (USAF).Who is stronger Israel or Egypt? ›
This is reinforced by the annual rankings of the U.S. based Global Firepower Index, which ranks Egypt as having the ninth most powerful military in the world, while Israel is ranked as having the eighteenth.
The prosperity of Israel's advanced economy allows the country to have a sophisticated welfare state, a powerful modern military said to possess a nuclear-weapons capability with a full nuclear triad, modern infrastructure rivaling many Western countries, and a high-technology sector competitively on par with Silicon ...Does Turkey recognize Israel? ›
Although it had voted against the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine, Turkey recognized the State of Israel in 1949.Does Saudi Arabia recognize Israel? ›
The two countries have never established diplomatic relations; in 1947, Saudi Arabia voted against the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine, which aimed to split the territory of British Palestine into an Arab state and a Jewish state. As of 2023, negotiations to establish diplomatic relations were ongoing.Why do Israel and Palestine fight? ›
The Israeli–Palestinian conflict has its roots in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with the birth of major nationalist movements among the Jews and among the Arabs, both geared towards attaining sovereignty for their people in the Middle East.Can Iran missiles reach Israel? ›
Iran's New Paveh Missile Can Reach Israel but Is Not a Game Changer, Experts Say.Is it safe for Americans to visit Iran? ›
Iran - Level 4: Do Not Travel
Do not travel to Iran due to the risk of kidnapping and the arbitrary arrest and detention of U.S. citizens. Exercise increased caution due to wrongful detentions. Country Summary: U.S. citizens visiting or residing in Iran have been kidnapped, arrested, and detained on spurious charges.
|Haiti Travel Advisory||Level 4: Do Not Travel||May 17, 2023|
|Honduras Travel Advisory||Level 3: Reconsider Travel||March 1, 2023|
|India Travel Advisory||Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution||October 5, 2022|
|Indonesia Travel Advisory||Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution||May 2, 2023|
Iran and Russia are strategic allies and form an axis in the Caucasus alongside Armenia. Iran and Russia are also military allies in the conflicts in Syria and Iraq and partners in Afghanistan and post-Soviet Central Asia. The Russian Federation is also the chief supplier of arms and weaponry to Iran.Is Iran military powerful? ›
Iran is ranked 17 of 145 out of the countries considered for the annual Global Firepower review. The nation holds a Power Index score of 0.2712 with a score of 0.0000 being considered exceptional in the GFP assessment. This country is an active member of the OPEC (Org. of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) alliance.What are women's rights in Iran? ›
Under Iran's civil code, men and women not only have unequal rights to divorce and in decisions over responsibility for children, but there are also several discriminatory provisions that limit women's agency and access to the job market.
Russia Has The Most Nuclear Weapons In The World—Here Are The Other Countries With The Largest Nuclear Arsenals.Who has more nuclear weapons the United Kingdom or Israel? ›
|Country||Military Stockpile||Total Inventory|
|🇬🇧 United Kingdom||180||225|
If this is calculated per inhabitant, taking purchasing power parity into account, then Israel ranks 33rd in the list of the richest countries. Inflation in Israel in 2022 was around 4.39%. Within the EU, the average in the same year was 9.22 percent. In the United States, it was most recently 8.00%.Is it safe for Americans to be in Israel? ›
Most locations in Israel are reasonably safe by American standards. While concentrated areas of terrorism and armed conflict do exist, they will largely be avoidable. Your guide, the authorities, and the local people will likely make certain that you are made aware of the location visitors should and should not go to.Is it safe to go to Mexico? ›
Generally speaking, Mexico is a safe destination if visitors use common sense and educate themselves about the particular region of the country they are visiting. Due to crime, several regions of Mexico are subject to elevated travel advisories.Can an American citizen travel to Israel? ›
For U.S. passport holders entering Israel via Jordan at Allenby/King Hussein Bridge, Israeli authorities issue visas on arrival. Individuals with Israeli citizenship, regardless of other nationality, including U.S. citizenship, must enter and depart Israel using their Israeli passports.Why did Saddam Hussein want to draw Israel into the war? ›
General Barak summed up the discussion with the observation that, on the one hand, Saddam was afraid of an Israeli response but, on the other hand, he had a powerful motive to involve Israel in the conflict in order to break up the coalition that the United States was building up against him.Can you go to Iraq after Israel? ›
Israel nationals are banned from entering and transiting in Iraq, even if not leaving the aircraft and proceeding by the same flight, except Iraqi Kurdistan where Israeli citizens are only allowed to travel.Is there a war between Israel and Egypt? ›
The Six-Day War began with a preemptive Israeli air assault in Egypt and Syria. An Israeli ground offensive was also launched in the Sinai Peninsula, the Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip, and the West Bank. These territories were all captured by Israel, though the Sinai Peninsula was later returned to Egypt.Who are USA's enemies? ›
- Iran. It could be disputes over oil, its relationship with Iran, the support of nefarious factions, or all the above. ...
- Syria. The conflict between Syria and the US didn't begin as a Syrian - US conflict, but as a Syrian civil war. ...
As Supreme Leader, Khamenei is the most powerful political authority in the Islamic Republic.What are Iran's weaknesses? ›
- Economic and financial situation still dependent on hydrocarbon revenues.
- UN sanctions, toughened by the USA and the EU because of the Iranian nuclear programme.
- Unfavorable business climate and insufficient investment.
- Political and social tensions.
Diplomatic links between China and Iran have been maintained into the 20th and 21st centuries with the formation of both the People's Republic of China and the Islamic Republic of Iran, in 1949 and 1979, respectively.What Iran is famous for? ›
What is Iran known for? Iran is known for its rich cultural heritage in various forms of art such as literature, architecture, and much more. Iran comprises several spectacular architectures in the form of royal palaces, ancient mosques, and historical museums.Is Iran a healthy country? ›
Iran ranks last among the 150 countries in terms of the ratio of health economy volume to GDP, the World Health Institute has revealed.Does Iran have nuclear weapons? ›
According to official U.S. assessments, Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in late 2003 and has not resumed it. This program's goal, according to U.S. officials, was to develop an implosion-style nuclear weapon for Iran's Shahab-3 ballistic missile.Does the US have an embassy in Iran? ›
Embassy of the United States, Tehran.What is the main faith in Iran? ›
Sunni and Shi'i are the two largest branches of Islam, with the overwhelming majority of Iranians practicing Shi'i Islam. About 90 percent of Iranians practice Shi'ism, the official religion of Iran. [i] By contrast, most Arab states in the Middle East are predominantly Sunni.How powerful is Iran in the world? ›
Iran is ranked 17 of 145 out of the countries considered for the annual Global Firepower review. The nation holds a Power Index score of 0.2712 with a score of 0.0000 being considered exceptional in the GFP assessment. This country is an active member of the OPEC (Org. of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) alliance.Who is stronger Iran or Turkey? ›
A ranking of military strength in the Middle East for 2021, released by Global Firepower, places the Turkish army at No. 1. It surprisingly places Israel fifth, and its arch-nemesis Iran third.
The Prime Minister is the most powerful political figure in the country. The Prime Minister is ceremonially appointed by the President upon recommendation of party Representatives in the Knesset, and makes foreign and domestic policy decisions which are voted on by the cabinet.Who has the strongest military in the Middle East? ›
Turkey stands out as the most powerful country in terms of its military capacities in its region while Lebanon is the weakest, a global military strength index finds. Turkey has boosted its military power over the past year, moving up two places in the Global Fire Power's 2023 Military Strength Rankings.Why is Iran important to the world? ›
It is a founding member of the United Nations, the ECO, the OIC, and the OPEC. It has large reserves of fossil fuels—including the second-largest natural gas supply and the third-largest proven oil reserves. The country's rich cultural legacy is reflected in part by its 26 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.Which country is the enemy of Iran? ›
The biggest rivalry in the Arab–Iranian conflict is between Saudi Arabia and Iran, who have been waging a heavy proxy war against each other since the late 1970s.Who has the most powerful army in the world? ›
1. United States Of America. US Military has the biggest defence budget in the world. They are known for their most powerful Air Force on the planet, named as United States Air Force (USAF).Which country is more powerful Israel or Turkey? ›
Israel has the most powerful military in the Middle East, followed by Turkey and Saudi Arabia, a new ranking released by Business Insider revealed on Monday.Where does Israel get its power? ›
Most energy in Israel comes from fossil fuels. The country's total primary energy demand is significantly higher than its total primary energy production, relying heavily on imports to meet its energy needs.Which language do Israelis speak? ›
Hebrew is the country's official language, and almost the entire population speaks it either as native speakers or proficiently as a second language. Its standard form, known as Modern Hebrew, is the main medium of life in Israel.Who is the strongest king in the history of Israel? ›
Our series on attaining greatness in God will not be complete without discussing David, who was no doubt the greatest king of Israel that ever lived. He is best known as “a man after God's own heart.”Can Egypt defeat Israel in a war? ›
Egypt's autocrat has said his military could defeat Israel in any future war between the neighbouring former enemies, pro-government media reported. Egypt's president has said his military could defeat Israel in any future war between the neighbouring former rivals, pro-government newspaper Youm7 reported.
The Israelis felt defeated by the Egyptian victory of Oct. 6, 1973. It wasn't just a defeat in battle but defeat in the face of the biggest threat to its existence in its 25 years of being.Which countries defeated Israel? ›
|Conflict||Combatant 1||Combatant 2|
|War of Independence (1947–1949)||Israel||Egypt Iraq Transjordan Syria Lebanon Saudi Arabia Yemen Holy War Army ALA|
|Sinai War (1956)||Israel United Kingdom France||Egypt|
|Six-Day War (1967)||Israel||Egypt Syria Jordan Iraq|