Bob Kaplan on US and Israel:
Israel’s supporters believe that because both the U.S. and Israel are democracies, the two countries share identical national interests. But Israel is half a world away from America, virtually surrounded by enemies on land, while America is an island nation bordered by two vast oceans. Because a nation’s interests are governed to a great extent by its geographical situation, it’s simply impossible for the two countries’ interests to neatly overlap. Take the dilemma of Iran’s nuclear program. Iran threatens Israel much more than it does America. It may very well be in Israel’s best interest to attack Iran. But it is probably not in America’s for Israel to do so, given America’s exposure in Iraq. And an Israeli attack could destroy President Barack Obama’s efforts to reach out to the Muslim world. If you think the tension between the U.S. and Israel is high now, just wait until there’s a significant spike in casualties in Iraq following an Israeli strike on Iran.