Israel now believes that it can attack and disable Iran's nuclear weapons effort without either of the side effects that otherwise make an attack unpalatable.
1) without so infuriating Iran's civilian population that they dig in and fight to the death, andSecondly, Goldberg says, Israeli officials have now convinced Netanyahu that they will be able to take out Iran's nuclear sites without provoking an all-out war. Because the sites aren't located in heavily populated areas, this theory goes, Iran's regime will just deny that an attack took place. And Iran will be so scared of America's military power, meanwhile, Iran won't risk attacking U.S. ships in retaliation...
2) without drawing the rest of the world into the conflict.
Specifically, Goldberg says, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes that an attack on Iran's nuclear sites would actually "unclothe the emperor"--demonstrating to Iranian civilians that their leaders were weak and, thus, encouraging them to overthrow the regime.