Following publication of a Hebrew edition of Spies, the authors Yossi Melman and Dan Raviv are featured in a TV documentary — on Israeli television’s Channel 10 — about how and why Israel flattened that building in remote, northeastern Syria. As their book points out, then-Prime Minister Ehud Olmert decided to obey the Begin Doctrine: named for the late Prime Minister Menachem Begin’s decision in 1981 to destroy Iraq’s nuclear reactor, because he determined that no Middle East nation hostile to Israel should be permitted to develop nuclear weapons.
The Syrian example of five years ago offers clues, perhaps, on Israeli decision-making about Iran’s nuclear program. In 2007, however, the United States government did not mind the fact that Israel decided to act alone — after George W. Bush turned down a request by Olmert for U.S. air power to destroy the building. As of now in 2012, the Obama Administration is obviously urging Israel not to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities. Not now.
Melman and Raviv’s book in Israel is titled Milkhamot ha-Tzlalim, which is Hebrew for “The Shadow Wars.” To view the 45-minute documentary, which also features a former deputy national security advisor to President Bush — Elliot Abrams — speaking in English about the Olmert-Bush conversations regarding the Syrian reactor, please CLICK HERE.