A Palestinian cleric, brandishing a knife, commands his brothers to stab Jews. 'Now we know why the Jews built walls around Jerusalem: to keep their throats from being cut.'
Well, the walls you see around the Old City today were built by the Turks. But the purpose was the same. He is, in this limited way, correct: that is what walls are for. They are to protect the goods of civilization from the barbarians outside.
Israel has become incredibly isolated in the last few weeks. Even a month ago, it was possible to believe that Israel could unilaterally destroy Iran's nuclear program if it decided it had no other choice. Such action would have required them to become open about their possession of nuclear weapons, most likely: even our ground-penetrating conventional weapons might not accomplish the task. If we were going to take military action against Iran, it would be better to go in on the ground and use sappers, reserving the air forces to pin down and destroy the IRGC units that tried to stop us.
With the Russians deploying air forces and advanced anti-aircraft weapons in Syria, however, the odds that Israel even could stop Iran have lengthened considerably. Indeed, at this point it will be difficult for us to maintain our limited deployment in Iraq. Those forces are cut off in every direction, a danger that I wonder if the Obama administration has begun to ponder. They would probably be allowed to withdraw, if they go now. Alternatively we could send up a force through Kuwait to provide them a salient through which they could withdraw even in the face of Iranian opposition. But they are completely exposed to the whims of our enemies as it stands. They are even sharing basing with Iranian militias.
In time the logic of that will play out one way or the other. Either we will go, or our forces will serve as hostages for our good behavior, or they will be killed in a deniable act of war ordered by Iran but carried out by proxies they need not acknowledge.
Israel is very much alone at the moment. It would take very bold action for America to protect them, action that would need to be both bold and wise if it was not to set off a war with Russia. We do not currently have the leadership for such action. Our civilian leaders are neither bold nor wise, not in their carrying out of foreign policy in the Middle East, and Central Command is dogged by a scandal that reaches to its highest levels. It will be some time before that could possibly change for the better, and at this point it must be doubtful that it ever does.