Friday, April 14, 2006

Iran, Israel, the US and a MAD situation

From American Liberalism blog.

In an interesting article on religion, communism, nuclear deterrence, mutually assured destruction (MAD), Iran, Israel and the US, James Richard Brett draws a poignant conclusion regarding the "Iranian Problem". This is very well written, with a relieving dose of tongue-in-cheek humour, often lacking in pieces regarding the nuclear conundrum.

The author concludes:
It seems clear to me that a Cheney-Rumsfeld "surgical nuclear strike" against several dozen Iranian nuclear installations (some of which may be hardened to withstand multiple megaton nukes) would not necessarily endear the surviving Iranian population to American ways and policies. Few, indeed, would convert to Christianity, and most I suspect would dedicate themselves permanently to a violent disruption and destruction of the Great American Satan. Surgery, although it will certainly disrupt the Iranian nuclear effort is unlikely to be the answer to the "Iranian Problem." Then, what if Cheney and Rumsfeld unleashed a total nuclear war against Iran with the objective of removing Iran and Iranians from the world stage more or less permanently, sending them back to the 10th or 9th century, as the saying goes? Would this solve the problem? It surely would remove Iranian petroleum from the world market. It would cause a plume of radioactivity to encircle the globe for years, causing cancer and other unforeseen problems in countries wholly innocent of the Iranian Problem. It would, by the way, murder millions of innocent Iranians and their children for which even the bellicose Christian god might not be very willing to forgive and forget.

Okay, if surgical strikes are unlikely to break the will of the regime and if utter destruction of the country is an unacceptable policy, what use are nuclear weapons against a country that has none?

None. They are useless.

For Iran nuclear weapons could eliminate Israel, but they would soon find that making the Holy Land radioactive for decades to come would be unacceptable not only to Israel's allies but to millions of Muslims in the region. No, this is not what these feisty Iranians are up to. I think that Iran is hoping to get into a Mutually Assured Destruction scenario with Israel and the U.S. and believes that such a policy will work to their advantage much better than the asymmetric situation that prevails today [my emphasis]. As Cheney and his confreres believe that more war (or at least significant sabre rattling) will solidify their hold on the levers of power in the United States, ... so do the mullahs in Iran. The solution then is obvious. We should seek regime change in both Washington and in Teheran, and we should not go to war with Iran!

Now read the whole thing.

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