The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

From the Special Report All-Star Panel Thursday, December 1, 2011

On whether President Obama’s claim that his administration has done more for Israeli security than any other is also the view of the Israeli government.

It is not.

And I’m sure Obama knows it. If he doesn’t, he’s delusional.

And this is really chutzpah. This president has done more to delegitimize and undermine Israel’s position in the world than any other president. And he did it by arriving on the scene and imposing and demanding of Israel a freeze on settlements, including the building of Jewish homes in Jewish quarter of Jerusalem of all places, something that had never been a precondition in 17 years of negotiations….

Of course the Palestinians had to insist on it as well once the president had — and that destroyed all negotiations.

It made Israel the fall guy for an error of an arrogant amateur who imposed this at the beginning of his term….

Second, the most important issue for Israel, for its security, is Iran. And this is a president who at the time of maximum weakness of the mullahs in 2009 did not lift a finger to help the revolution because he had another delusion that if he engaged in negotiations with the Mullahs he could sweet talk Iran of its weapons.

The policy is a failure. He knows it. And here we are on the threshold of Iran becoming a nuclear power.

On the suggestion that tougher sanctions against Iran could hurt the U.S. economy:

Everything is going to have a price. It is true that if we cut off Iran’s economy entirely or if we impose, as the Europeans, or some of the Europeans, are suggesting, an embargo on Iranian oil you might get an increase in the oil price. But think how the cost will pale compared to the cost of what is inevitably going to happen if nothing is done, which is an Israeli airstrike, which would cause the outbreak of a regional war, which could cause the closing of the Straits of Hormuz, which would cause a doubling of [oil] prices.

Diplomacy is managing what the options are in the real world. To not take the available steps to sanction Iran and to weaken it at a point where it really is extremely weak — any regime that is rounding up spies, as Iran has done in recent weeks, is regime under pressure — to not do that because afraid you might have a spike of oil prices is unbelievably irresponsible and short-sighted.

By doing nothing we are asking for — inviting — much more dire consequences for the region and for world and American economy.

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

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