With a belligerent prime minister in power most of the attention has been centred on Benjamin Netanyahu who has let it be known that unless the US toughens its stance against Iran's nuclear threat, Israel might go it alone.
Next month he travels to New York for the opening of the UN General Assembly. According to Israeli diplomats, he will meet President Barack Obama to seek three commitments – namely a promise that the US will increase the level of sanctions against Iran, introduce a tight deadline for negotiations with Tehran, and that if these don't work US forces will join Israel in a decisive assault.
Netanyahu is not alone in cranking up the pressure. Last week his defence minister, Ehud Barak, announced that while a decision had not been taken to bomb Iran, the detailed plans had already been drawn up and were simply awaiting implementation.
So far so familiar. The upsurge in bellicosity has been matched by a flurry of speculation in the Israeli media and not a day passes without the revelation of new top-secret government documents hinting that a line has been drawn in the sand and an attack is imminent. In a sense it's more deja-vu. The mutual dislike felt by both countries means that Israel will never sit by and allow Iran to produce a workable nuclear weapon, and talk of a preventative strike has been rife for many months.
However, this time round the talk is not confined to the possibility of war. There have also been calmer counsels urging restraint. Among the most notable of these has been the Israeli president himself. Last week in a televised interview Shimon Peres, pictured below, a revered figure in Israel, claimed it would be difficult and dangerous for Israel to act unilaterally and that the US had to be involved in the operation. Later, in the face of criticism from the right, he refused to retract his comments, claiming that he was merely saying "what is in my heart with a loud and clear voice".
His comments and the angry response from sources close to Netanyahu revealed fault lines that have opened up in Israeli politics as a result of the clamour to deal with the threat of Iran. As if these were not enough to increase tensions in the region, Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, used the end of the holy month of Ramadan to launch a stinging attack on Israel claiming that the Zionists were a deadly tumour in the region but that the day was not far off when "in the new Middle East there will be no trace of the Americans and Zionists".
Foolish and inflammatory talk of this kind plays straight into the hands of those Israelis who are in favour of hitting Iran before it is too late but, as Peres has shown, not everyone in the country is looking for a confrontation which could easily descend into a nasty and perhaps unwinnable regional conflict.
Avi Dichter, a former head of Shin Bet, the homeland security agency, became the latest senior official to claim an attack on Iran would be a "total mistake". His thinking reflects recent polls which show 61% of Israelis oppose a unilateral attack on Iran.
The bottom line is that very few Israelis want to ignite a war which would cause chaos in the Middle East, plunge the world into a new economic downturn and cause huge numbers of unnecessary deaths. By the same token every Israeli wants to live in peace without the threat of nuclear annihilation at the hands of a country whose leaders are pronounced anti-Semites. Achieving that aim is not easy and for that reason the majority understand that Israel cannot go it alone and that they will have to depend on US support.
With a US presidential election looming, that won't be forthcoming this year. Obama is not going to run the political risk of handing the Republicans ammunition if a new conflict starts in the Middle East – which will certainly be the case if Israel attacks Iran. So, who is the target of this latest outburst of angry words? If it's not for the Israelis themselves then it must be Obama and his team. As far as it goes that's all right but we all remember the fate of the little boy who cried wolf.