Tensions in Middle East increase

Tensions between Israel and Iran increased Monday after two bomb attacks were carried out against Israeli embassy staff in New Delhi, India and Tbilisi, Georgia. Though no deaths were reported, Israel accuses Iran of masterminding the attacks, according to Reuters.

The conflict between both countries has increased with recent threats of violence from both. Earlier this month, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s leader, called for the annihilation of Israel and its people, according to a WorldNetDaily article.

According to an article last month in The New York Times Magazine, Iran’s nuclear threat developed in the mid-1990s. Since then, Ehud Barak, the Israeli defense minister said in the article that Israel has multiple reasons to feel strong enough to attack Iran – including its ability to severely damage Iran’s nuclear site, support from the United States and the fact that it has exhausted all other possibilities of containing Iran’s nuclear threat.

Chrystal Ferber, 22, a political science and women and gender studies double major said conflict with Israel is not new.

“A lot of Middle Eastern countries – specifically Palestine – don’t think that Israel is a country and that they stole the land with America’s help,” Ferber said. “There’s just been this ongoing conflict between Israel and a lot of other Middle Eastern countries for a while.”

Zeena Aljawad, 21, a psychology major, said an attack from Israel would not be justified.

“I don’t think any country is justified to attack any other country mainly because it is the common people of the countries being attacked that suffer the most, which will only create a cycle of revenge,” Aljawad said. “As for the justification of attacking Iran because of its nuclear threats, Israel and the United States have both threatened to use nuclear bombs on Iran and the United States is the only country that has actually used nuclear bombs in previous wars. There is a double standard when it comes to who can and cannot use nuclear power, which is probably provoking those who are being told not to have nuclear power.”

However, in regards to a possible preemptive attack from Iran on Israel, Ferber doubts it will occur.

“I don’t think that Iran will actually attack Israel because they know that Israel has a lot of foreign allies – like America – and that there’s already a lot of tension between America and Iran and that will probably be the strike that will push them into, America, to make devastating moves against them, so, I don’t think they’re actually going to do it,” Ferber said.

David Inga, 22, a history graduate student, said being aware of the happenings around the globe, such as this, is important for everybody in the world, not just students.

“Any issues that occur around the globe are important for anybody to know, not just students, but anybody around the world to understand and comprehend because of the fact that when you understand what’s happening on a global scale then you understand your position on this earth and exactly what our role is,” Inga said.

In terms of what should happen, Ferber said Iran should be sanctioned.

“I think that it’d be best if more sanctions are put against Iran and maybe – or the U.N. can try to force some sort of agreement between the leaders.  I think that that’s smarter than starting to blow people up,” Ferber said.

However, Inga said there is unequal treatment when it comes to Israel and Iran having nuclear weapons.

“What I personally have a problem with is understanding why Israel can have nuclear weapons but Iran cannot,” Inga said.

About Vanessa Martinez