British Intelligence Joins the Pro-Israel Lobby

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Sir John Sawers, the chief of the British intelligence agency MI6, says that Iran will be a nuclear weapons state by 2014, and that an Iran with nuclear weapons would present "huge dangers" to Israel and to the United States. "The Iranians are determinedly going down a path to master all aspects of nuclear weapons; all the technologies they need," he said. "It's equally clear that Israel and the United States would face huge dangers if Iran were to become a nuclear weapon state." He also said that his agency was working to "delay that awful moment when the politicians may have to take a decision between accepting a nuclear-armed Iran or launching a military strike against Iran," and he added: "I think it will be very tough for any prime minister of Israel or president of the United States to accept a nuclear-armed Iran."

These statements suggest one of two things:

1) British intelligence is taking orders from AIPAC and the Likud Party;

2) The chief of British intelligence might be right on the merits; Iran is pursuing nuclear-weapons status, and that this is something that should worry Israel and the entire West.

I'm reasonably sure there are people reading this who believe the answer to be 1).

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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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