Rational Thinking?

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Rational Thinking?

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CBS News' 60 Minutes last night ran an interview with former Mossad chief Meir Dagan. Mr. Dagan said, "The regime in Iran is a very rational regime."


The interviewer, Lesley Stahl, replied, "Do you think Ahmadinejad is rational?"

Mr. Dagan: "The answer is yes. Not exactly our rationale, but I think that he is rational."

Stahl:  "Do you think they're rational enough that they are capable of backing down from this?"

Dagan: "No doubt that the Iranian regime is maybe not exactly rational based on what I call Western-thinking, but no doubt they are considering all the implication of their actions."

I had a number of thoughts as I watched this interview. Why was a former head of Mossad, Israel's intelligence agency, which is the equivalent of the CIA, speaking so openly about Iran's nuclear intentions? This man Dagan was at one time the point of the dagger aimed at any enemy of the State of Israel. He cut and thrust first to defend the state. He sent operatives to any part of the world to secure the nation and its people.

I wondered if this man, who knows far more of the facts than any American news reporter (he's seen all the top secret intelligence data) really believes the "rational" thinking of Iran's mullahs is something he can trust the security of Israel to? His bottom line was that there could be reason not to launch a pre-emptive strike on Iran now in favor of an extended diplomatic solution that could stretch another two to three years.

I had one other thought. Could this man be manipulating the media and public opinion in some complex public relations move by Israel to keep everyone off guard about its intentions, conceding striking at Iran's nuclear program? I don't know exactly what is going on, and perhaps no one does. Israel knows its survival is on that line with the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran. Iran's leaders have made no secret of their hatred for the Jewish state, and they have often stated their desire that Israel be pushed into the sea and obliterated.

Prime Minister Netanyahu said last week in a speech before supporters of Israel that "if it walks like a duck, talks like a duck and quacks like a duck—its a duck!" Israel's leadership sees a distinct threat. I operate from a perspective that the leaders in Israel and Iran know what the other is capable of doing. Comments by all parties mean something and should be crucially discerned. It is a very dangerous moment.

Jew and Arab have been unable to live in peace in the region in our time. War after war has been fought between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

This developing confrontation between Iran's stated intentions toward Israel and the survival of Israel and a potential full scale war in the Middle East is the most serious issue facing the world right now. No one wants to see a war of any scale erupt at this critical point in world affairs. The results would be catastrophic.

We are dealing here with war, and not just any war. This would be war in the region where the West receives much of its life blood—oil. Disrupt the flow of oil from the Persian Gulf, and you see gas prices sky rocket. The fragile economic recovery in the United States and Europe suffers. Jobs are lost, the price of basic commodities rises, and a lot of plans are set back.

War in the Middle East is at the heart of end-time Bible prophecy. Invasions by outside powers, the rise of armies and their convergence on Jerusalem are key events described in Daniel and Revelation. We watch any major event in the region with not only a view of geopolitics but also how this fits with an understanding of the Bible prophecy. We are dealing here with big events that impact people on the ground in both Iran and Israel. And that is the most critical thing to consider.

While watching this interview last night and hearing the former Mossad head's thinking, I am wondering whether he is playing some high stakes mind game. Not that I am pushing for Israel to make a pre-emptive strike. These leaders are dealing with human life—both Arab and Jew. Israel has learned the art of war, and they play for keeps knowing that there is no second chance. The stakes are very high in this affair. Are they playing for peace, or are they playing at war?

I wish world leaders were skilled at waging peace rather than war. But sadly the words of Isaiah that describe the path to war fit too many today:

"Their webs will not become garments, nor will they cover themselves with their works; their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands. Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood; their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths. The way of peace they have not known, and there is no justice in their ways; they have made themselves crooked paths; whoever takes that way shall not know peace" (Isaiah 59:6-8).


I wish that men like Meir Dagan, Benjamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad could find the way to run a straight path toward peace—for the sake of all their people. This would be the rational way to think and act. Sadly, history shows most nations and leaders do not know the rational way to a lasting peace. That would take submission to God, and that they have not known.