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When All Else Fails, Bomb Iran

June 7, 2007

When All Else Fails, Nuke Iran

Thanks to Manu Gaffarifar for the above link.

Paul Roberts, who wrote this piece, has developed the reputation as a careful thinker so when he suggests the possibility of a nuclear strike – in conjunction with other concerned sources, it should be taken seriously.

The threat of an attack on Iran – including one using nuclear weapons – remains high despite contradictory signs (negotiations, military build up in the Gulf, special forces operations in Iran’s peripheral zones). It is notable that when asked if the `nuclear option’ was off the table, all the Republican presidential hopefuls at last night’s New Hampshire debate insisted on keeping `all options open’ (as does Hilliary Clinton). A number of scenarios for a nuclear attack against Iran targeting its nuclear energy program already were previously published. With the Bush Administration in conflict over how to proceed, unfortunately, the danger of a nuclear attack against Iran – supposedly to protect the world from still non-existent nuclear weapons – remains a possibility

What is becoming clear from the contradictory reports is that there is an intense struggle both behind the scenes and somewhat in the open now over Iran in Washington. Libby might be going to prison, Rumfeldt back in Taos where he can help build the pueblo having been responsible for destroying half of Iraq, Wolfowitz, with a nice lifetime pension, no longer at the World Bank, Gonzalez hanging on by a thread…but don’t underestimate the staying power of the neo-cons.
Without understanding the extreme ideological aspect that is propelling them (Bush and CO), it is difficult to comprehend their actions, which seem irrational. The rationalist analysts of US foreign policy cite all the reasons the US (or Israel) won’t attack Iran. My friend Herb Rubenstein, who ran for Congress, comes to mind. He has never believed – if our email exchanges are any indication – that the US has any intention of bombing Iran. The cost would be too great, the results too meager, who knows what an attach would trigger in Iraq, the Persian Gulf etc. I hope he’s right.

The problem is that Herb is too rational and logical. I believe he is underestimating the ideological motivation of the Bush Team. Bush, Cheney and the rest of the gang have approached the whole War on Terrorism as a kind of ideological jihad to reshape the world. They have already proven a number of times that ideology trumps rational politics every time. Plus, these gents are stubborn, experienced at ideological and bureacratic infighting (which counts for something) and are as attached to their dream of restructuring world with F-16s, Cruise Missiles using US military personnel as cannon fodder. They are ideologues clinging to power – men (and women) `of the book’, be it the bible or Milton Freedman’s collective works, and they count on a generally depoliticized American mainstream to implement their programs. And now they are politically cornered and isolated. They believe, with some justification, that in the harsh struggles of today, they’ll outlast and outpunch (ideologically) us who will eventually give up and either go to the malls or skiing in the mountains. Although discredited globally – how much lower can Bush’s poll go? – i guess we’ll see and nationally having suffered serious setbacks, they – Bush, Cheney, Rove, Hadley, Abrams, Bolton – continue to slug it out..And…as many of you are aware, the Democrats – who might be a little better, are not much better and seem wed to the same vision, just with slightly altered tactics.
One might think that the morass in Iraq might stay the hand of the Bush Administration on Iran. Perhaps.
But the Administration is split over tactics (not, by the way about regime change). Condolessa Rice, Robert Gates and basically those supporting the Baker Hamilton Report of last December prefer sanctions, diplomacy and intensifed covert action (of which there has been a great deal) agains Iran to bring down the regime. Cheney, the neo-cons and the AIPAC crowd are pressing hard for a military strike, including one that includes nukes. There have been a few articles of late suggesting that Cheney has been encouraging the Israelis to strike Iran because Bush has backed Rice’s diplomatic efforts. (don’t get too excited about the latter either)…,which means, as most of you are well aware, that the situation remains quite dangerous. Combine that current conflict in the n. of Lebanon which might have more to do with the establishment of a new US military base than it does about Palestinian jihadists, and the ongoing pounding of gaza, the increase of Israeli check points in the West Bank to more than 500 (do they have them every block?)…and…and at the least we’re in for a tense summer, and at most face the danger of another another war.

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