Monday, August 30, 2004

War with Iran

I'm hearing an awful lot of noise about a possible attack on Iran. Here is one of the more alarmist articles.

The scenario is basically that Israel or the United States attacks the nuclear power plant in Iran or threatens to. Iran either retaliates or else launches one of them there famous pre-emptive strikes the U.S. is so high on. There are lots of U.S. troops in the region, so lack of intercontinental missiles will be no prob for the Iranians.

As pessimistic as I am about so many things these days, I think we may actually escape this particular threat. The reason? I'll call it the North Korea factor.

First, a summary of reasons to be concerned:

1. There is an election on and Bush is by no means guaranteed a win. Just like Poppy, Bush launched his war too soon in the re-election cycle to benefit from the boost. I think at once point during the first Gulf War, Poppy had a 90+% approval rating. It was way too soon to peak, however, and Bush went down.

2. The Israeli spy scandal. Not only does it provide yet ANOTHER need for a distraction, it is also directly related to Iran, as the purported spy was involved in formulating Iran policy. In addition, the above article (and I don't know anything about the guy who wrote it, so you'll have to judge his analysis on your own) suggests that the outing of Franklin was accomplished by other forces (CIA) trying to derail invasion plans. Once again, if this split between the administration and CIA is real and not just a sideshow, I am in the perplexing position of having to root FOR the CIA. Given how many "former CIA" are making the rounds of talk shows and leftist websites like Counterpunch, it does lend credence to the idea that this is a real split. So, says the article, if Bush is going to act, he'll have to act quickly.

3. The neo-cons (what I really mean here is anyone and everyone in our ruling elite who feel a need to take over the Middle East whether for ideological reasons or personal financial gain) really don't mind the mess in Iraq. It makes Bush look bad, but half of "likely voters" don't seem to care. Even if those voters did, their agenda is simply to destroy what exists in the Middle East, and they never had much concern with what replaced it as long as it led to a higher degree of U.S. control. Thus, arguments that the U.S. can't handle another war right now are irrelevant. Plainly speaking, they'll just bomb shit and sort it out later.

These are all pretty compelling arguments. In fact, I think I feel a little ill. But take heart, dear reader! All is not lost!

You see, Iran has NOT been under sanctions for 12 years. Most of their children have been allowed to grow up to draft age (not that they'd have to draft anyone should war come with the U.S and Israel.) Their military has not been dismantled.

Now, I'm not saying that Iran could come over here and take over the place, just that they wouldn't be an easy score like Iraq. I call this the North Korea factor, because North Korea actually admitted to developing nuclear weapons and the U.S. left them alone, despite their presence on the "Axis of Evil" list. Sure, I know the main reason we let them be is that they don't have that Texas Tea, but their ability to defend themselves surely played a role in the decision.

In short, the U.S., already getting its ass kicked in Iraq, could seriously lose against Iran. I'm placing my hopes in the belief that this fact will at least postpone any Iran invasion for awhile.

Of course, I'm just grasping at silver linings here. Gotta look for hope where you can find it.


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