Power struggles and nuclear ambitions mean that Iran and the Middle East will remain volatile and any peace will be precarious.
The spectre of military confrontation with Iran, igniting a wider Middle East conflict, looms large as 2013 begins. If you feel you have been here before, you have. According to recent reports from Israel, Binyamin Netanyahu was ready to attack Tehran’s suspect nuclear facilities as long ago as 2010, but was blocked by his two top army and intelligence chiefs.
What makes 2013 especially dangerous is that potential war-triggers are more numerous and more finely balanced than two years ago. Iran’s nuclear weapons-related and associated missile programmes are more advanced, or so the western powers believe. In Israel, meanwhile, the two recalcitrant army and intelligence chiefs have been replaced.
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