Wednesday, May 03, 2006

The Dogs Of War Are Barking

When will the war with Iran officially begin and under what circumstances? Those seem to be the only questions left to ask in the minds of the NeoCons. Paul at Powerline provides a good example of the forced choice that the NeoCons would like to foist upon the debate over Iran:
There are only two horses in this race -- a nuclear Iran and an attack against Iran's nuclear facilities. Those who back a third horse -- be it U.N. involvement or "tough" sanctions -- are engaging in a Clinton-style evasion.
Bill Kristol is alarmed at the suggestion that we'd even consider talking to Iran, because, you know, you're "soft" if you even consider solving this with diplomacy. They see Condi's recent statements, which looked to me like an announcement of a coming war, as an pronouncement that the Bush Doctrine (i.e. shoot now, plan later) is dead.
Condi and her colleagues will try to say--privately and off the record--that it ain't so. They'll explain to Bush supporters here in Washington that the administration hasn't really gone soft on Iran. The State Department is just doing its job, reassuring the Europeans so as to keep them on board. Sure, hawks will worry that proclaiming "Iran is not Iraq" signals that the Bush administration is now terrified even to threaten the use of force against terror-sponsoring dictatorships seeking weapons of mass destruction. But all options, at least theoretically, are still on the table...
Condi and her colleagues may come home and say, privately, it ain't so. But it is so. Much of the U.S. government no longer believes in, and is no longer acting to enforce, the Bush Doctrine. "The United States of America understands and believes that Iran is not Iraq." That's a diplomatic way of saying that the United States of America is in retreat.
Man, there's nothing like being called a punk by an Upper-West-Side prep-school sophist (a brilliant one, no doubt) to get my blood boiling. Yeah- attack Iran or we're in retreat! Kristol still must be reeling from his beatdown on the Colbert Report the other day, because if this is the lamest and most common instigator bullying tactic, I don't know what is.

But, as stupid as Kristol's bullying tactic is, it seems that Suzanne Nossel, over at Democracy Alliance has bought in hook, line, and sinker to the war party's propaganda (so what does that make her?). Let's call her top-five list on Iran Top 5 things to do about Iran if you've overdosed on NeoCon koolaid (my comments in italics):
After last Friday’s report by the International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed that Tehran has successfully enriched uranium and defied the UN Security Council’s Friday deadline to halt the process, we find ourselves in a frightening stand-off with an uncontrollable Islamic demagogue bent getting nukes. I am not an expert on the region, but here’s my take on some things the U.S. ought and ought not do:
1. Do everything possible to position this as a showdown between the Iran and the UN, not Iran and the US... *Because this tactic was actually effective in bullying the UN into passing a resolution that the US used to give the Iraq War a thin vaneer of legitimacy
2. Align the world’s neutral nations behind a tough UN stance... *Holding back laughter...
3. Stay close to Europe... *Can't hold it back any more- HAHAHAHA!!! If Europe is stupid enough to fall for this tired tactic again, then, well, they're dumber than I thought possible
4. Hold firm on the idea that Iran cannot dictate to the UN... *Yeah, only the US can dictate to the UN! Don't they know that the US is the international community?
5.Consider an outcome involving intrusive inspections under UNSC supervision... why even bother playing that game again? We already know what the US thinks about inspections
I really hope that Nossel is getting a check from PNAC, because without folks like her on the "liberal" side, they'd actually have to make convincing arguments. But solid arguments aside, I have no doubt that the NeoCons, unfazed by their utter catastrophe in Iraq, are pushing with everything they've got to start a war with Iran. The question is- can we muzzle this dog before it bites us all?

Crossposted at Blue Force | National Security Progressives, Progressive National Security

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