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Netanyahu is working to keep the peace

Contrary to Adil Shamoo ("Netanyahu wants war," March 4), Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu advocates for greater restrictions on Iran's nuclear program not because he is a war monger but because absent such restrictions, Iran is likely to develop a nuclear weapon. Given Iran's apocalyptic and expansionist ideology, and its record of supporting militant jihadists and terror groups, a short-term deal which maintains Iran's nuclear capability and relies on easily circumvented inspections to ensure Iran's compliance will only increase the likelihood of war and conflict, not diminish it.

Equally unfounded is Mr. Shamoo's charge that the prime minister's focus on Iran is designed to divert attention from Israel's squelching of a two-state solution to the Palestinian issue. Israelis across the political spectrum are justifiably wary of creating a state on its border which, as happened when Israel withdrew from South Lebanon and from Gaza, could be taken over by radical Islamists bent on Israel's destruction. Just five weeks ago, the head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards threatened to attack Israel from the West Bank, and terror cells continue to target Israel from that area.

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Finally, Mr. Shamoo's ludicrous claim that Mr. Netanyahu is to blame for the rise and popularity of ISIL is sadly reflective of the propensity of anti-Israel polemicists to blame Israel for all of the ills and pathologies that beset the Arab world. Until this stops, and Arab leaders and intellectuals focus their energy on repairing their dysfunctional governments and societies, murderous groups like ISIL will indeed attract followers and gain support.

Jay Bernstein, Baltimore

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