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Macgregor Puts Israeli Use of Nuclear Weapons on the Table

April 16, 2024 (EIRNS)—Too little discussed is the nuclear risk in Southwest Asia from Israel’s nuclear arsenal, an element of the strategic picture that is kept behind the scenes. However, retired Army Col. Douglas Macgregor’s April 15 commentary posted in the American Conservative, put the matter on the table: “Israel does not contemplate operations against Iran or any other state that challenges Israel’s bid for strategic dominance in exclusively conventional military terms. In other words, for Israel’s national leadership, the use of a nuclear weapon is always on the table. Israel’s fundamental deterrence is still asymmetric nuclear capability.”

Macgregor argues that Israel will not tolerate any challenge to its strategic superiority and that Iran’s April 13 barrage changed very little in their thinking, even though it demonstrated that Iran has the capability “to destroy” Israel. For Macgregor, the horror will continue: “A million are starving in Gaza, and Americans should expect the Israeli campaign of murder and expulsion in Gaza to resume shortly.

“As a result, Netanyahu will demand the subjugation or destruction of Iran or any Muslim entity that challenges Israeli strategic dominance. For Netanyahu it’s a matter of existential importance to Israel. Yet the U.S. did not commit to attacking Iran. This is unacceptable to Netanyahu, and he will work to alter Washington’s position.

“Under the circumstances, Washington should expect Israel to employ whatever military power is at its disposal, including nuclear weapons, to destroy Iran’s strategic power. Destroying Iran’s underground nuclear facilities has been a goal for a very long time.

“Moscow, however, will not tolerate a devastating attack on Iran. The question is whether Biden will tolerate such an attack and continue to indulge Israeli operations in Gaza.”

Macgregor concludes by suggesting that Biden should read the advice that Admiral Konstantin I. Derevyanko sent to Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev in August 1961, in which he castigated the Soviet General Staff’s love affair with nuclear weapons:

“Which planet do these people [the Soviet General Staff] intend to live on in the future, and to which Earth do they plan to send their troops to conquer territories?... By this indiscriminately massive use of nuclear weapons on a small and narrow area like Western Europe, we would not only be accepting millions of radioactively contaminated civilians, but, because of the prevailing westerly winds, would also be radioactively contaminating millions of our own people for decades—our armed forces and the populations of the socialist countries, including our own country as far as the Urals.”