Two of Israel’s biggest friends in the last decade plus – Jose María Aznar (former Prime Minister of Spain) and Stephen Harper (former Prime Minister of Canada) have written an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, imploring Europe and the US to act against Iran.
The Israeli military was forced last month to engage an Iranian drone launched into Israeli airspace from Syria. Israel’s defensive actions in this case were limited, but the world should take note. There will be more such incidents if Tehran is permitted to continue projecting force throughout the Middle East. To prevent a full-scale crisis, North America and Europe must join Israel in stopping Iran.
Iran is a revolutionary theocratic state committed to spreading religious extremism throughout the Islamic world. It combines this ideological mission with pragmatic tactics, projecting political and military power from the Persian Gulf to the Mediterranean and Red seas. To support its ambition, Iran has illegally pursued nuclear weapons and fought wars using terrorist proxies. Iran’s leaders have threatened Israel time and again with total destruction, and now, for the first time since the Islamist revolution of 1979, Iranian power has arrived at Israel’s border.
Despite Tehran’s quest for regional control, popular protests in December and January showed that most of the nation’s citizens don’t share their leaders’ designs. The regime’s destabilizing actions have also triggered resistance from Saudi Arabia and other regional powers. Iran’s own citizens and neighbors are convinced of Tehran’s malice, and all concerned nations should heed their warning.
The first objective must be to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.
Rather than preventing Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the 2015 agreement gave the regime a road map to achieving them. Predictions that the agreement would de-escalate tensions and improve cooperation have proved wrong. Since signing the agreement, Iran’s aggression and hostility have increased.
But fixing the agreement and stopping Iran from going nuclear would not eliminate the threat. The U.S. and its allies must also roll back Iran’s aggression and influence throughout the Middle East. Tehran continues to wage war using terrorist proxies in Lebanon, Syria and Yemen.
Israel remains the greatest bulwark against Iran, and Iran remains committed to destroying the Jewish state. The recent border skirmish was the first time Iranian weapons directly infiltrated Israeli space. Iranian operatives have established themselves ever closer to Israel’s northern border and pose a growing threat to Israeli security.
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