On Monday, President Barack Obama welcomed Israeli Prime Ministerto White House and discussed a number of issues of bilateral interest including the controversial nuclear program of Iran. Both the leaders, however, appeared having a difference of opinion on how to deal with Iran. President Obama was of the view of giving more time to economic sanctions and diplomacy to work to contain the over ambitious Iran, while Netanyahu still deemed a preemptive attack as the only viable solution.
While President Obama announced full support to Israel, he appeared optimistic on resolving Iran’s nuclear program issue through dialogue and negotiations. The approach is encouraging indeed, but the president should have conveyed the same to Netanyahu in clear terms. US officials, perhaps, know the serious repercussions of the strikes on nuclear sites of Iran and want to resolve the issue through diplomatic means. The meeting between both the leaders was of much importance, but nothing concrete on the issue of Iran was decided.
Israel wants to strike nuclear sites of Iran to destroy the alleged nuclear program of the country, while the US appears reluctant on initiating a military action against the country. US officials believe that a military action against Iran can only delay the development of nuclear weapons and is not a permanent solution of the problem.
In June 1981, Israel launched a preemptive strike on Iraq’s alleged nuclear site in Osarik and destroyed it. But the subsequent events proved the decision of destroying the site was wrong, as after the attack, Saddam Hussein initiated work on the nuclear program of the country with more zeal and passion. The nuclear program of the country was destroyed again in March 2012, when the US-led coalition forces invaded the country to eliminate Weapons of Mass Destruction.
Intelligence reports by Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and other spying agencies still suggest that Iran is far behind the process of acquiring nuclear weapons; therefore, it would be futile to launch a military attack on the country.
On the other hand, Iran has also denied for a number of times that the country is pursuing to develop nuclear weapons. Even the supreme leader of the country, Ayatollah Khamenei, has termed the nuclear bomb "against Islam" and a "great sin."
Iranian officials say their nuclear program is for civilian and research purpose. They want to use their nuclear program for energy purposes and medical research. So, the diplomacy and dialogue should be given a chance to succeed.
Iran has also expressed willingness to be part of a stalled dialogue process – P5+1. The dialogue s between Iran and five permanent members of the UN Security Council and one non-permanent member Germany. So, Israel should also exercise patience and discretion and give diplomacy a chance to succeed in resolving the issue peacefully.