Iran's ballistic missiles can reach New Delhi, Moscow and Athens, and in 2-3 years will be able to hit Brussels, Paris and Berlin, Former Deputy Defense Minister Efraim Sneh warned Monday in a debate on Iran at the Herzliya Conference. He quoted the head of the US agency in charge of ballistic missile defense, who estimated that by 2015, Iranian missiles could hit the territory of the United States.
Allowing Iran to have such global leverage with nuclear arms is unacceptable, Sneh stated, and added that when people use the word 'containment' with regard to a nuclear-armed Iran, he hears the word 'acquiescence.'
Other speakers sounded somewhat resigned to the prospect that Iran would achieve nuclear capability, but Brian Katulis, Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, was optimistic.
"In this difficult region of the world, America and Israel are the strong horses," he said. "They are the ones that set the agenda and can shape events, and in the instance of Iran over last two years what we have seen is a very assertive approach."
Katulis referred to the "stories of the computer wars and the sabotage" allegedly carried out against the nuclear program in Iran, through the Stuxnet virus. "We have seen, I think, a sophisticated policy of pressure and assertive engagement which has forced Iran into a corner," he said. "Today Iran is much more isolated than it has been in decades... A noose has been created for Iran and it is hanging itself with it, with its own actions."
"This did not exist before. We have moved beyond passive appeasement. The Obama administration has taken some very aggressive steps to renew the US-Israel partnership."
Noting that the "strongest" war fought in the last two decades was the First Gulf War, in which a wide coalition was deployed, Katulis said that "Israel needs to work with America to think through - 'how do we build the coalition?'"
The CEO of the Center for American Progress is John Podesta, who served as chief of staff to Bill Clinton when Clinton was president of the U.S.