Borders and Guarantees

More

Somewhat related to the issue raised in last night's debate about extending the U.S. nuclear umbrella to cover Israel, it's always worth making the point that one of several reasons it would serve Israel's interests to aggressively seek a resolution of the Palestinian issue is that it would be much more feasible for the United States to extend security guarantees to Israel under those conditions. With a peace deal in place, Israel would be a friendly democracy with internationally recognized borders -- just the sort of place the U.S. would make a formal treaty with.

But as things stand, Israel has no internationally recognized borders to guarantee. Obviously, some actions like a hypothetical unprovoked Iranian nuclear first strike would obviously go far beyond the scope of border ambiguity, but nuclear-armed Israel doesn't actually need U.S. guaranteed to have a credible threat of massive retaliation. Guarantees and formal alliances would be much more useful in a much lower-intensity setting, but country without internationally recognized borders isn't a good candidate for NATO membership or other kinds of similar relationships that might be useful to Israel.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Matthew Yglesias is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What's the Number One Thing We Could Do to Improve City Life?

A group of journalists, professors, and non-profit leaders predict the future of livable, walkable cities


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

Just In