A Nuclear Iran Would Mark a 'Turning Point in Human History'

I could have used this quote, from Henry Kissinger, at my recent Intelligence Squared debate in which I argued, with Shmuel Bar, against the motion that Israel could live with a nuclear Iran:

"The danger is that we could be reaching a point where nuclear weapons would become almost conventional, and there will be the possibility of a nuclear conflict at some point... that would be a turning point in human history," he said.

This is the biggest worry of all: That a nuclear arms race in the world's most volatile region leads to a kind of quick-draw, launch-on-warning approach by multiple nations, ending in an accidental conflagration. Kissinger:

"For 15 years, the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) have declared that a nuclear Iran is unacceptable, but it has been approaching," he said. "In a few years, people will have to come to a determination of how to react, or the consequences of non-reaction.... I believe this point will be reached in a very foreseeable future," he added.

Here, by the way, is a link to the Intelligence Squared debate, which is worth watching, and not only because my team won. 

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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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