Playing the game of WW3 “Chicken”

by Bruce O’Hara

April 17, 2024

After Iran’s weekend drone attack on Israel, Israel’s war cabinet met and approved immediate ‘retaliatory’ strikes against Israel. Then, Joe Biden phoned up Bibi Netanyahu, and supposedly told Bibi to “take the win.”

Suddenly Israel’s plans were less clear. Israel would still take its revenge. Just not right away.

I have since been contacted by a shadowy source claiming to have a transcript of that phone call between Joe Biden and Bibi Netanyahu. I’ve tried to press my source for more information, but all the source would say is that the transcripts ABSOLUTELY did not originate with the Donald Trump campaign office.

Here is the transcript that was anonymously downloaded to my Substack email account:


Joe Biden: Hi Bibi, I hope you and Sara are doing okay. It must be a real pisser when there’s protesters outside your house all the time. I used to hate that until Jill reminded me I just needed to turn down my hearing aids.

Benjamin Netanyahu: I presume you’re calling because of last night’s drone and missile attack. They took the bait, Joe! This is the opportunity we’ve been waiting for for a very long time, Joe. We now have the perfect excuse to attack Iran.

Joe Biden: Bibi, You and I were sure that Iran would not attack Israel in anything more than a symbolic way. We were convinced that the threat of Israel dropping a nuke on Tehran would keep Iran in line. I’m not so sure any more.

Benjamin Netanyahu: What do you mean?

Joe Biden: After last weekend, the Iron Dome is pretty much an empty shell. Iran doesn’t need nuclear weapons to have deterrence. At this point, if Iran were to drop half a dozen hypersonic missiles on the Dimona nuclear power plant, you wouldn’t be able to stop them. I suspect if they blew up that reactor, pretty much everywhere between Jerusalem and the Egyptian border would be so poisoned with radiation as to be uninhabitable for decades. It wouldn’t be all bad though – I suspect the Palestinians would all leave Gaza and the West Bank voluntarily if that happened!

Benjamin Netanyahu: That’s not funny, Joe.

Joe Biden: Just saying, Bibi, ya gotta look on the bright side!

Benjamin Netanyahu: America wouldn’t let that happen!

Joe Biden: You’re right, Bibi. So that’s why you’re going to take the win, Bibi.

Benjamin Netanyahu: Take the win?

Joe Biden: I see Israeli TV is saying you shot down 99 percent of the missiles and drones that Iran sent.

Benjamin Netanyahu: I know that’s what we’re saying, but Iran destroyed two of our military airports, AND an intelligence center in the Golan heights. And caused us to blow through a thousand million dollars of Iron Dome missiles. That’s not exactly a win, Joe!

Joe Biden: Does the rest of the world know that?

Benjamin Netanyahu: No, but…

Joe Biden: Then make sure they don’t find out, Bibi. And take the win.

Benjamin Netanyahu: But Joe, all those planes you’ve got out on the carrier Eisenhower – they could shoot down those Iranian missiles, right?

Joe Biden: About that, Bibi. We helped you shoot down the last lot of drones and missiles because I was certain Iran wasn’t so crazy as to try to sink a US carrier. That was before Iran sent 300 drones and dozens of missiles at Israel; I’m not so sure any more. Maybe Iran is that crazy.

Benjamin Netanyahu: Joe, I just heard you at a press conference saying that America’s support for Israel was ‘ironclad.’

Joe Biden: It is, Bibi. We care deeply about the Israeli people. But Russia has made it pretty clear that if America comes to your aid, they will be in Iran’s corner.

Benjamin Netanyahu: You could beat the Russkies!

Joe Biden: We’ve also talked to the Chinese. Though the Chinese aren’t saying directly that they will go to war on the side of Iran, they are refusing to say that they will not support Russia and Iran if war breaks out. We simply cannot risk a war with Russia, Iran, AND China. After the war in Ukraine, and the war in Gaza, we have enough heavy ordinance left for a month of fighting at best. At another time, we could afford to play chicken with Iran. Right now, our hand is too weak for me to want to do that. I’m sorry, Bibi, I wish it were different.

Benjamin Netanyahu: What are you saying, Joe?

Joe Biden: Half the oil in the world flows through the Straits of Hormuz. If Iran decides to cut off that flow, there’s nothing America could do to prevent that. The price of oil could go to $200 a barrel by this time next week. That would mean gasoline at $8 a gallon in the United States. Bibi, what are my chances of winning the election in November with gas at $8 a gallon?

Benjamin Netanyahu: Approximately zero.

Joe Biden: So that’s why you need to ‘take the win’, Bibi. Pretend the shellacking you just took was a great victory. Trust me, Bibi, it works. America does it all the time.

Benjamin Netanyahu: And if Israel attacks Iran on our own?

Joe Biden: I can’t stop you from attacking Iran, Bibi. But if you do, you will be on your own. Completely on your own. Have I made myself clear?

Benjamin Netanyahu: Joe, you don’t understand. If I back down from attacking Iran, there will be elections. If there are elections, I will lose. If I lose the elections, I will probably go to jail.

Joe Biden: Bibi, You won’t be ‘backing down.’ You’ll say you’re going to make Iran sweat, and wait. You’ll say you’re going to attack Iran when they least expect it, with overwhelming force. You’re a survivor, Bibi. You know how to do this stuff.

Benjamin Netanyahu: And you’ll help us with Iran when the time comes?

Joe Biden: We’ll see, Bibi. We can talk about that another day.


That was yesterday. I admit I was surprised that Israel would back off from taking revenge on Iran, even temporarily. Revenge and deterrence have always been Bibi’s schtick.

Today the word from US intelligence is that a heavy Israeli strike on Iran will come some time later today. Maybe it will have already happened by the time you read this.

You might want to pour yourself a good stiff drink.

Perhaps Israel will come to its senses.

Perhaps Iran will wimp out when Israel attacks it.

Perhaps Russia and China will fold if America calls their bluff.

And maybe what turns out to be the start of World War Three is just hours away.