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Sunday, January 29, 2006

Count-down to Zero Hour

OK, well I've wanted to do this for a while. I have been baiting my time on when the best time would be to post about Iran. Of course, about 10 million other bloggers have posted about this. With what's been going on with them in the news, I can create a whole category of posts just about their recent actions and statements. However, I'm going to try to keep this narrowed down to recent dialogues I have been having with fellow blogger and author, Vik Rubenfeld. He has written numerous articles about Iran, and in two of them (Here and Here), he cited my comments. So, basically, that's the line I'm going to follow. As many of my bloggers friends know, I'm currently in the process of writing a theoretical paper on whether Iran's security threat to Israel is an existential one, or is their line of rhetoric merely propaganda to gain popularity in the Arab world. Because of this, I've been hesitant to make any statements that would bias my writing and research process. However, I've begun to talk about policy and comment on what I think, outside the realm of theory, about the reality of the situation.

Due to Ahmadinejad's threats and desires to "wipe Israel off the map" and the breaking of a two year hiatus of Uranium enrichment and research, the world has recently begun make some "tough" statements against Iran's policies. For example, over the past couple of weeks, several United States Senators have publicly called for "serious" action and sanctions against Iran. France has threatened nuclear retaliation in response to a terrorist attack on their soil. This is probably the harshest words the world has heard from Chirac when it comes to fighting the War on terror.

The thing about all these statements is that that's all they are. While Iran moves closer and closer to the "point of no return", that step in uranium enrichment where they will have the ability to create a bone-a-fide nuclear weapon, the world is just talking. And, to me, those words seem to be nothing but hot air, and Ahmadinejad realizes this. That is why he has been able to come out and make such harsh statements without any retribution and fall-out. The world, especially the EU3, has been "negotiating" with Iran to stop their nuclear research and development for more than two years now. All that has ever come out of these discussions was a two year freeze on uranium enrichment, and the seals have been broken on those for a few wk.s now. So much for that. For two years now, the world has been talking with Russia to stop their technological assistance and development program that they're providing for Iran. These talks have also been to no avail, and no threats of repercussions or sanctions have been issued against Russia (our "democratic" allies). At this moment, Iran has nothing to fear from the world except for Israel, and even then, they may have no reason for much fear if Israel does not receive any support in combating Iran's nuclear program. This is not 1981 (In 1981, the Israeli Air Force destroyed Iraq's Tammuz nuclear reactor after it became well established that Hussein was on path to creating a nuclear arsenal). Iran has learned from Iraq's mistakes. They have reactors and uranium shields in so many locations, in bunkers, and in mountains, that who knows where to start.

These Senators and world leaders are lauding sanctions against Iran as if they will be the savior. What they're, either, not admitting or don't want to say is that Russia and China both have veto options in the Security Council. Both of these countries are very nice and cozy with Iran. They do business with the countries and are considered by Iran to be allies. For this reason, they have more to gain from their relationship with Iran than they have from the rest of the world, at this point. I suspect that they would have no problem and are right now gearing up to veto any sanctions attempt presented to the UN by the rest of the world. I would have to say that the Sanctions option is not really an option at all. I believe that this will ultimately come down to a military confrontation, and I believe that Israel will have no choice but to take the lead on this option.

{After the Iraqi nuclear reactor was taken out, Israel instituted the Begin Doctrine: "On no account shall we permit an enemy to develop weapons of mass destruction (WMD) against the people of Israel. (Source)"}

I believe that [Israel taking military action against Iran's nuclear program] will come down to not having a choice. It won’t matter whether the threat to Israel is real or whether Iran’s threats are just propaganda. Israel will not and cannot let itself become a pawn in Iran’s game to be a super-power in the Middle East. Personally, I think that’s what it’s all about. Think about it this way. Would we have gone into Iraq, either in ‘91 or ‘03, so easily if we knew that they had nuclear weapons? I’m not talking about in the process of getting, I’m talking about having the stockpiles in their midst. Biological and chemical weapons are one thing, but if Israel had not taken out Iraq’s reactor in ‘81, how different would the world picture be today? Same goes for Iran. If we allow them to acquire nuclear weapons, the world will definitely think twice and hundred times before even thinking about the possibility of maybe attempting to attack Iran for being a terrorist country. On top of that, Iran will be able to use Israel as a hostage to stop the world, especially the U.S., from messing with them and their policies. In the Gulf War, what did Israel had to with anything? Yet, who was attacked with scud missiles when Saddam wanted to threaten the U.S. with repercussions for interfering with their attack on Kuwait? Israel.

I believe Israel can’t allow itself to be put in that position again. Especially if Iran succeeds in getting nuclear weapons. There’s no gas mask or bomb shelter to protect you for those. I believe Israel won’t have a choice. Iran can’t be allowed to have nuclear weapons. Will the US support such a strike? That remains to be seen. I think the Bush administration definitely will and will breathe a huge sigh of relief that they didn’t have to do it. I think the liberals, European countries, and the UN will condemn us as usual [as they did in 1981], then also breathe a huge sigh of relief that the tyrannical Israel did what they don’t have the guts to even think about.

Even if Iran didn’t believe that Israel would strike back [in response to a nuclear attack], or even if they decided to utilyze a small tactical nuclear strike, they fully understand that the fall-out on the Arab world would be disastrous. For example, what about the cross winds and weather patterns on the day they decide to strike? It could very well happen that they don’t account for a glitch in their weather analysis and the nuclear fall-out heads back right in their direction. Or, they could be off by a mile or two, and the bomb could land or detinate in Saudi Arabi, Egypt, or any of the other countless Arab neighbors that reside alongside Israel. {Think about it in this context. After the nuclear reactor explosion in Chernobyl, in 1986, the nuclear fall-out spanned hundreds of miles, across numerous countries, and critically contaminated thousands of square miles. As in that area, the Arab countries surrounding Israel are grouped closely together. It is almost certain that one or all of them would be effected in some way by a nuclear attack on Israel}

Other Arab countries are already trying to team up with Iran to get on their “good side” and become allies, eg. Syria. So, the question doesn’t come down to theory anymore. The what if questions no longer apply, especially when it comes to Israel’s preperations. Israel has begun to equip its military arsenal with improved nuclear weapons and detterents, like the nuclear Submarines that they purchased (from Germany, if I’m not mistaken). Israel can no longer afford to talk what ifs and theory. I believe that Israel understands, even-though they’re saying to the contrary, that diplomacy is no longer an option. Russia and China will veto any attempts at sanctions the EU3 or U.S. brings to the UN table. Even-though I haven’t come up with a thesis statement yet, that’s based on theory. In practice and policy, Israel must now be prepared, based on all the clear evidence and data that Iran is throwing at the world, that Iran is preparing for a war using a nuclear arsenal.

The rest of the world can sit around sucking its thumb hoping that as long as they cover their eyes, the boogey man’s not hiding in the closet. Israel can’t afford to do that.


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