Posted by Joseph Knippenberg
Can you top this?
Think of it this way: "How many Americans do the Iranians get to blow up, to disfigure, to maim and to kill, before Condi and Geoge W. Bush decide to do something about it?" "Something" that is other than wander from one worthless conference to another, whining about the Iranians, whining about the lack of "international support," whining about the lack of Security Council support, whining about the Syrians, whining about the failed Palestinian "peace process." You think that someone would clue them in that it's unseemly for the world's superpower to whine. Rather, it's appropriate and fitting for that superpower to act, not to plead. To pound enemies, not to parley.
The thing between us and the Iranians is a matter of honour now, non-negotiable American honour. It's a thing of blood.
Think of this too, as we're posting comments, there are American men who are slowly navigating the hallways of military hospitals, trying to get accustomed to the prosthetic devices they'll be wearing for the rest of their lives. And ALL BECAUSE of the Iranians.
One reason why conservatives are, quite rightly, losing their respect for this president. He has allowed the Establishment to constrain him far too much. And that's the best case. The worst case is that he doesn't even understand what a serious response is required.
What about the politics of the possible? It makes me feel sick writing that, but understanding what we can do militarily to Iran (and wanting very much to see it happen) and considering America's political will for the fight - there is a considerable and grievous gap. It is a matter of blood and honor. Who takes that seriously anymore?
Maybe this relates to the other threads about our not adequately teaching American history. There is some serious deficit of American civic pride and will in that it takes the destruction of the World Trade Centers for us to respond to external threat. Yet that public will fades in - how long?
We must learn to listen through the hatred if we truly wish to appreciate--indeed, celebrate--our differences. If they are attacking us, it is because we have not done enough to understand and to try to accommodate their needs.
It makes me feel sick writing that, but understanding what we can do militarily to Iran (and wanting very much to see it happen) and considering America's political will for the fight...
No one should want to see such a thing happen. No one should want us to have to consider a military option. No one should want to move towards an option that will result in Americans and civilians being killed unless it is absolutely necessary. And, even if it is necessary, no one should want to do it. If necessary it is something we have to do, not something we want to do. I ask for caution when using the word "want" in this situation.
America does not have the will to fight Iran because President Bush has disillusioned the country with his horribly-manage Iraqi campaign and his inability to really let the country think that we ARE in a real war right now. People fear that Bush's failure with Iraq, our continued troubles in Afghanistan, and the possibility of other problems around the globe have stretched our troops too far to defend us and that if we go to war with Iran there will definitely be the option of a military draft on the table-- something which over 80% of 18-25 year olds completely object to and are incredibly fearful of happening. If the American public doees not see that it is absolutely necessary to remove the threat of Iran, then we will not win a war against Iran.
And, yes, it will take a WTC or a Pearl Harbor or a Lusitania to rouse Americans to fighting a war in a foreign land where two other wars are already giving us great troubles. You ask us to look at history, and history shows that Americans have always been cautious to go to war-- especially in a foreign land. War is and ought to be the last option. Only when it becomes absolutely necessary should war be considered. Only when Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt thought it was absolutely necessary did they enter the world wars; only when Truman thought it was absolutely necessary did he drop the bombs on Japan. Only when it was absolutely necessary did our Founding Fathers declare independence from Great Britain over 230 years ago and ushered in the revolutionary war. If you believe that it is necessary we go to war with Iran, then you should try convincing our leaders and our people that it is necessary to wage an all-out battle with the Iranian madman currently leading that poor country. Waging a proxy war in Iran will not rouse the American people, and politicians will not risk another Iraq before 2008. It will take a far greater attack directly linked to Iran for our people and many of our leaders to go to war with Iran.
And Cameron, the United States of America has absolutely no need, reason, or duty to accomodate the needs of a country that is trying to undermine us. Even if they were not undermining us, we still have no reason or duty to accomodate their needs. And I think what they want is perfectly understandable, as their madman president has said it quite clearly-- the destruction of Israel, the fall of American influence, and the rise of a global, hard-line Islamic state.
"There has never been a good war or a bad peace."
Good post, though I'm not sure that Cameron Slife is serious. When I first read his post, I thought it was a parody.
I agree with ROB insofar as he suggests that a war with Iran can't be in the cards right now. It would in fact require a draft, which is politically impossible. Even the type of bombing required to really delay their nuclear progam significantly is probably too high-risk.
It is true that we are undermanned, but I am still puzzled why our forces are not allowed at least to take out Iranian bases directly involved in Iraqi subversion. Iran has much to lose by engaging us whole hog (like its refinery) and can't be eager in this regard. It would add to the pressure on Iran for us to respond directly to her provocations. It surely is a casus belli and I think Dan is generally right that Bush and Rice have failed woefully in engaging the enemy in the whole theater these last few years.
Sorry, R.O.B., it was an emotional reaction and I am sure we are all glad I am not president. However, I do think I understand Iran, which is why I would choose retaliation rather than a meek acquiesence.
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