Friday, March 9, 2012

Nuke Iran! We need another war.

Iran: Our Next Proxy Enemy?
Click here for related story [Washington Monthly]

The thunder of saber rattling has become deafening in recent weeks.  Iran is building a nuclear weapon most assuredly aimed at Israel; so it's essential that the US attack Iran by land, sea, and air --and our own nuclear strikes to protect Israel.  And, if we don't, Israel will launch its own pre-emptive strike!

Prime Minister Netanyahu has conveyed this demand to us, and he promises to launch World War III -- unless we give Israel more aid.

Chiang Demanded We Attack  China 
We older soldiers recall another Netanyahu, Chiang Kai-shek, who had lots political clout on Capitol Hill.  Chiang proclaimed the need for the US to attack China to assure Taiwan's safety and independence.  And, if the US would not give him lots of economic and military aid, then he would unilaterally attack mainland China - initiating WW-III.  Walt Kelly's portrayed him in a comic strip as a uniformed little mouse standing in a rowboat shouting "Unleash Me!"

And we considered, briefly, engaging in WW-III.

Now, some would call this diplomatic blackmail; but, Israel is our "close ally" and it carries a pretty powerful political and media clout in the US -- so, US politicians are loathe to antagonize our Israeli ally.

But, the US is now war-weary --
after Iraq, which apparently did not have the Weapons of Mass Destruction -- and which supposedly targeted Israel; and Afghanistan, where the opium trade poses a greater threat than the remnants of Bin Laden's Islamic terrorists; and Libya, where we went to war by [very expensive] proxy so Europe could have oil if the Russians withheld theirs.

      Have I got a deal for you!  (c) UPI
Your Wallet -- or WW3!
So, we're now presented with Mr. Netanyahu's demand that we either give Israel a lot more economic and military aid, or he will launch a strike against Iran which will trigger WW-III.

Shibley Telhami (U of MD) in cooperation with the Dehaf Institute of Israel, released their results showing that public opinion in Israel opposes a strike on Iran:

"... only 19% of Israelis favor a strike, even in the face of US opposition.
"34% oppose a strike no matter what!
"42% would back a strike only if it had a at least the support of the US."

Meir Dagan, former head of the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, opposes a war with Iran, noting
"I decided to speak out because, when I was in office, Diskin, Ashkenazi and I could block any dangerous adventure.  Now, I am afraid there is no one to stop Bibi and (Ehud) Barak."

The problem is credibility; the threat of Iran's nuclear weapon capability may be a bit overstated.

Paul Pillar, who sports considerable expertise in both the Middle East and Counter-Terrorism, supports this view.  Pillar, a Vietnam era Army officer, a well-respected National Intelligence Officer at CIA and the National Intelligence Council, regards the
 "Iran Nuclear Threat" as speculative at best!

New Balance of Power?
"... they are not seeking a weapon which ... will be launched against Israel.  Indeed, Israel knows this very well, as Ehud Barak himself recently confirmed.  But, the fear mongering, in both the US and Israel, is politically useful and Israel is indeed very worried that their nuclear monopoly will be broken.  So are the Saudies, who, like Israel, would have a much more serious opponent to deal with in a nuclear Iran."

Now, Israel has had a nuclear weapons capability for more than 30 years, detonating their first bomb near South Africa in the late 1970s.  That caused a bit of angst in the Middle East and raised the fear factor there quite a bit -- perhaps leading to a bit of discomfort for Israel's Arab neighbors.

[Having that nuclear weapons capability is a powerful deterrent as the French noted following WWII in its position with the USSR.

French soldier preparing to attack
The French, known more for their daunting record of forceful bravado and defeats than for their military prowess and resolve, decided early on to let the Soviets know that at the first indication of a military threat, they would unleash their entire nuclear arsenal against a variety of Soviet cities.

In the end, the French military remained notable only for its parades and fancy uniforms; but, the Soviets knew better than to even voice a military threat against France, and the French were safe.


The Israelis, noted for their intellect and media clout -- if not for their social charm, recognized the French defensive measure as one they should employ -- and have, for decades.

So, what's the risk of letting all this huffing and puffing and saber rattling play out in our current political climate?

Heh, Heh.   So, what did that NIE mean!       (c) Mike Judge
Inevitably, our politicians, who rarely read more than a few paragraphs of National Intelligence Estimates, will likely intuit that Iran actually does have a nuclear weapon ready to launch at Israel and New York City, and screw themselves into a patriotic tantrum to launch a preemptive military strike at Iran.

How can they go wrong if they support that Yahu from Israel?

They fear being labeled as Anti-Semitic by MSM and the Council on Foreign Relations if they challenge Netanyahu -- and an uphill battle in their next election campaign.

No one argues that Iran's leadership deserves a good, swift kick in the rump.

But, are we willing to send our troops back to the Middle East to engage in a war no one wants and which will serve no purpose?

That's how we got into Viet Nam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

The Jewish Vote Counts  (c) USA Today

Yes, we should support Israel.

They are our ally [aren't they?] in the Middle East, and our politicians don't want to risk losing the political support in the US that Israel can give -- or deny.

If the Israelis don't support Netanyahu in this nonsensical demand for a political war to bolster his ratings, why should our politicians?

Some wonder who the greater threat is:
Iran?  or  Netanyahu.