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The War in Israel, Part I: The Future of the World Is in the Hands of 8 or 10 People

We've got a bunch of Israel-related content today and tomorrow. To start, Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen are two of the most plugged-in journalists in the country, at least among those not named Maggie Haberman. And they are worried. Very worried. VandeHei and Allen say that they have talked to many top government officials and they are worried about there being so many overseas conflicts and flashpoints all at once. The officials say this has been the scariest week since Joe Biden took office.

Former Defense Secretary Bob Gates—who ran the Pentagon under both George W. Bush and Barack Obama—told the reporters that the country is facing more crises now than any time since the end of World War II. He said that there is a gigantic funnel over the table in the White House Situation Room and all the world's problems come down the funnel to the same 8 or 10 people sitting there. And there is only so much they can handle at once. Among other things that have come down the funnel are these:

What really scares the folks in the Situation Room is that these threats could all fuse into one, with the U.S. and Israel facing Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea all at once. And while all this is going on, the House can't elect a speaker and half of all Americans don't believe anything the government says. All these people believe is what they see on social media, little of which is true. In the event of a real emergency, could the country unite, the way it did after Pearl Harbor and 9/11? Who knows? (V)

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