Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Friday, October 28, 2005

Iran Doing Favors For Bush

What is it with Iran and cooperating with America's far right? First it was "Iran-Contra" where the Iranian government bought weapons on the sly to help pay for a right wing insurgency in Nicaragua. Now, Iran's theo-fascist President is making public statements about how Israel should be wiped off the face of the Earth (oh, and he wants the USA wiped out too but that's not being taken as seriously for some reason). This is providing American "Neo-cons" with a real "I told you so" moment. What's worse, this regime actually DOES have an active nuclear program.

One reason I was opposed to invading Iraq was that Iraq was a paper tiger. And if they weren't, they were deterrable. I still think that about Iran. But when the President of Iran makes statements like this is makes it harder for people who think like I do to convince people who want to invade them.

Now, if it's Iran that has the really aggressive agenda (Iraq's aggression was largely contained) and the active nuclear program why did we invade Iraq instead of Iran? I think it was like the old story about the man looking for his keys under the street light even though he lost them in the shadows. When asked why he was looking under the light, he said "because this is where I can see." In other words we invaded Iraq because we could and didn't invade Iran because we couldn't. Iran's conventional military is bigger and more popular with the people than Iraq's. Iran is a much larger country too, with population more widely distributed and with a more mountainous terrain.

So what does all this mean? I think the Egyptian government hit the nail on the head. Their official statement said that these statements indicate the weakness of the Iranian government. It is all too common in the Middle East for governments to whip up anti-Israeli feelings and anti-American feelings when their support wanes. Iran could be doing a similar thing here. For Iranian officials calling for the extermination of Israelis and Americans could like Stalin showing the film Aleksandr Nevsky to whip up nationalism in anticipation of an invasion by Germany. So is Iran trying to provoke a US invasion? No. They think it's coming regardless of what they do. So they are trying to play to their biggest military asset - popular support. But they're doing it out of fear (like Egypt implied).

The bad news is that Iran is a big dangerous country that feels (rightly) that they're boxed into a corner. The good news is that we don't necessarily need to invade them to fix the problem. If we back off they probably will too.

OK, that rambled a bit. Sorry.


Anonymous said...

Well, the new president was identified as one of the US hostage takers from the 1980s. So is this attitude a surprise? And we have said that Iran is supplying terrorists to Iraq and possibly Syria. Iran is Sunni, and the Sunnis in Iraq are not happy about this new Constitution. So could that have anything to do with it?

// posted by USWest

Anonymous said...

I believe Iranians are mostly Shi'ite. But I take your point. No, this wasn't a surprise. It's still a bone-head move by the Iranian government. The USA can get away with having an idiot in charge because we are so big and powerful. But Iran has different's an unfair world. And we may be glad of it. 

// posted by Raised By Republicans

Anonymous said...

Oops, I stand corrected. 89% are Shi'a. I slipped! 

// posted by USWest