A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
December 5, 2007 Implications of the Report on Iranian Nuclear Weapons and Teachers Strike to End
The American intelligence report from Monday continues to dominate the news. Tyring to understand it is difficult. The New York Times had a number of good articles on the subject today including one quoting UN sources who have worked on the inspections in Iran, who stated "we believe the Iranians less than the US does". The Times also had an article which showed how absurd it is to try to separate civilian and military uses.
So what other theories are there beside the one I posited yesterday to explain the report?
Arab states in the Gulf who by and large reject the report believe it is all economic. They believe that President Bush allowed the announcement to go forward to bring down oil prices and allow American companies to trade with Iran. Ahmadinejad seemed to agree with that today when he spoke, claiming it was American companies need to do business with Iran that led to the change of opinion. Some Israeli experts believe it was a declaration of the Independence by the US intelligence committee from the Bush Administration, which took so much control of the intelligence organizations. Whatever the exact explanation is, the damage has been done.
The Israeli government is now trying to pick up the pieces of the policy that it has followed for the last few years. There are also political impacts of the report, both in Israel and in the United States. It will probably make it harder for Prime Minister Olmert to keep his coalition together. If this is not the year of decisions about Iran, it will be harder to keep Barak or Lieberman in the coalition. In the United States, the report will further strengthen the democratic candidates, once again underscoring a President that does not seem to have the details down. Bush either knew about the report when he gave his speech warning of war with Iran or he did not, either way he should have and certainly should not have given the speech he gave.
The teachers strike in Israel is over- sort of. The teachers have received court orders to return to work. They had wanted an 8% raise with no additional hours worked. The court approved the government offer to give them the raise temporarily in return for three hours of small group instruction. If the overall reform effort is not implemented the raise will be rescinded. School starts after Chanuka
On a positive note, I had a chance while working this afternoon to watch the songathon for Agudah LÕmaÕan HaÕhayil- the IDF soldiers welfare fund. There were a lot of great singers and stories. One of the most interesting stories was of a brother and sister who were together in pilotÕs course. They graduated together and one became a pilot the other became a navigator. If anyone wants to donate, the lines are going to be open all night since while it was live this afternoon it is being shown again tonight. The number is 972-3 606 6391