Home/Daniel Larison/A Formal Alliance with Israel Is a Terrible Idea

A Formal Alliance with Israel Is a Terrible Idea

James Stavridis makes a remarkably bad recommendation:

Given the new agreement with Iran — the awkwardly named Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action — it seems high time to consider a formal alliance with Israel.

There are a few obvious reasons why the U.S. shouldn’t do this. First, the U.S. already has far too many formal security commitments around the world, and adding another would needlessly add to U.S. burdens overseas. Second, Israel is already more than capable of defending itself, and has no need of a U.S. security guarantee. Besides, I doubt Israel would want to be obliged to the U.S. in this way. There is certainly no reason why the U.S. should want to formally commit itself to defending a country that has been involved in numerous conflicts with its neighbors and will likely be involved in more in the years to come. A formal alliance between the U.S. and Israel virtually guarantees that the U.S. will be pulled into many more unnecessary wars in the region, and in practice it would gain the U.S. nothing. The U.S.-Israel relationship is already a net liability for America, so it doesn’t make sense for the U.S. to bind itself more closely to them and become even more closely identified with them in the eyes of the region and the rest of the world.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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