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January 14, 2006 12:30 PM   Subscribe

How will we be prepped for war with Iran?

Winter/Spring - The clone army of foreign policy "experts" from conservative foreign policy outfits nobody ever heard of before suddenly appear on all the cable news programs all the time, frowning furiously and expressing concerns about the "grave threat" that Iran poses. Never before heard of Iranian exile group members start appearing regularly, talking about their role in the nuclear program and talking up Iran's human rights violations....
posted by kgasmart (269 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
that depends on how prepped we are for persian oil being cut off, a truly big insurrection in iraq and the grave possibility that other countries in the area get dragged into it ... it also depends on how prepped we are for a draft

the scary part is if they get close enough to getting a bomb, the israelis will do something about it and we may get dragged into it anyway

not to mention that china may get pissed at us and pakistan's government could be destabilized and replaced with fanatics with real live a-bombs

i don't think bush is that stupid ... he's got to know what a tough situation this could be

we're talking about a very real possibility of ww3 here
posted by pyramid termite at 12:39 PM on January 14, 2006


We're going to go into war mode on Iran, because the GOP playbook is limitied, and this would let them....

1) Attack Muslims, who are, of course, Terrorists.

2) Attack Liberals, who are, of course, supporter of Terrorists.

3) Funnel more money to military contractors.

4) Justify more reductions in the rights of US Citizens.

IOW, it's what they've been doing for five years. Why stop now, just because they've run out of things to flog in Iraq?
posted by eriko at 12:47 PM on January 14, 2006


After five straight years of Republicans going on TV and saying how Clinton and the UN were horrible failures on the Iraq sanctions, the idea that Bush could consider sanctioning Iran as a solution is almost laughable. And despite the past five years, I still believe if Bush tried to talk war with Iran now most of the country would honestly think he's list his goddamn mind.

The elephant in the room no one seems to want to say is that, well, yeah, of course Iran wants to build nukes, and that's with the amazingly optimistic belief they don't have them already. The option of debating how to stop Iran from becoming a nuclear military power is well off the table. They already are on a fundamental scale.

The only realistic options at this point are to have legitimate talks or restart the cold war. And in either way, Iranian territory, oil trade, and Palestinian statehood are all going to be factors involved that will have to be resolved.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:53 PM on January 14, 2006


The scary thing is, at the start, nobody believes it'll happen. I mean, did you really think in February '02 that Iraq was going to be invaded?
posted by Firas at 12:53 PM on January 14, 2006


Well, I'm moving out of the country in April. Have fun you guys.
posted by iamck at 12:57 PM on January 14, 2006


I mean, did you really think in February '02 that Iraq was going to be invaded?

Yes. I had been paying attention to the US political culture, and it was totally obvious.

I also knew a huge hurricane would hit New Orleans earlier this year.

Go figure.

This one is quite a bit less obvious. We simply do not have the military capacity to invade Iran. Bush has broken the US military. Iran knows it. So this will be more sabre rattling, covert ops, and diplomacy. Like we should have been doing in the first place if the idiot neocons hadn't been running the show. No invasion.
posted by mondo dentro at 1:02 PM on January 14, 2006


The elephant in the room no one seems to want to say is that, well, yeah, of course Iran wants to build nukes, and that's with the amazingly optimistic belief they don't have them already.

Well, Christ, consider what you'd do if you were Iran - and the world's biggest/only superpower who's already pronounced you evil moves in next door.

That's one aspect of the Iraq war that never gets discussed - to what degree did the invasion prompt/force Iran and North Korea to step up nuclear research that they might have a deterrent should they be next on the list?
posted by kgasmart at 1:04 PM on January 14, 2006


Bush has broken the US military. Iran knows it. So this will be more sabre rattling, covert ops, and diplomacy.

I think the point of the Atrios post, though, was that's not the point. We didn't invade Iraq until after the 2002 elections; before then it was equal sabre-rattling. If Bush can just push the war rhetoric long enough to repeat 2002 again, that's all he needs, not any actual war. Hell, they're already starting the Swift Boat campaign against John Murtha; expect the French analogies to return any day now.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:06 PM on January 14, 2006


Super War Preview
posted by homunculus at 1:13 PM on January 14, 2006


... that's all [Bush] needs, not any actual war.

Point well taken. But then the title of this particular FPP should be "how war hysteria will be used for political advantage by the Bush administration." There won't be a another invasion. The only reason they had the first one was because Bush thought a Hayekian utopia would be in full bloom in Iraq before the 2004 elections. He's under no such illusions now.

It all comes back to this: in the absence of a functioning opposition, lying and deception of the most craven and crude type is an effective political strategy. If it's bad for the country, well that's just tough.
posted by mondo dentro at 1:20 PM on January 14, 2006


Until the likes of the US and the UK give up their nukes and decomission their own nuclear power installations they have precisely no moral right to tell anyone else to do the same. Period. We're hypocrites to go after Iran or anyone else and we should practice what we preach or shut the fuck up. It's embarrassing.
posted by Decani at 1:21 PM on January 14, 2006


Is it true that Iran has large reserves of natural gas? My friend suggested 3 years ago that we'd be invading Iran for it.
posted by Citizen Premier at 1:27 PM on January 14, 2006


I wrote about the COMING WAR WITH IRAN back when the war talk was all tied to the Anti Israeli comments of the Iranian president. This piece may explain further my position in the parallel post about Ashkenazi jews. here is the intro.

Our politicians and the media have been throwing tantrumatic hisses at Iranian president Ahmadinejad in reaction to his ignorant claims about the Holocaust. While Ahmadinejad’s comments leave behind an aftertaste, our leaders’ repsonses deserve a bit of a rant themselves.

The Holocaust is a historical fact, not some politically motivated concoction designed to promote war. But for precisely this reason, folks like George Bush and the European Union president (not to mention everyone in between) are the worst kind of figureheads to be publicly berating Holocaust denial. It simply reeks of hypocricy, while Western armies are using depleted uranium weapons in urban areas, secretly jailing anyone they wish and moving them around through internationally franchised concentration camps, torturing them for confessions...

More on the israel question:WHO'S USING WHO?
posted by sundaymag at 1:31 PM on January 14, 2006


Its possible that because the Europeans have been shamed into conceding Iran is very bad (Evil, actually, but they won't say that), sanctions and/or a military blockade might be enough to get Iran to dismantle its nuke infrastructure.

What we need to watch is Iran's vile President. If he continues with the Holocaust denying and the destroy Israel rhetoric, I can defintely see airstrikes before the 2008 election--God-willing.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:32 PM on January 14, 2006


I seem to recall about this time last year, that Scott Ritter was predicting, almost guaranteeing a US attack on Iran in June of 2005. Didn't happen. Or, at least, I don't think it did. Or, maybe he just got the year wrong.

I suspect that this is some predictable sabre-rattling or some kind of redherring as a part of an effort to get Iran to rethink its recent action to turn its nuclear program back on. For better or for worse, mostly for worse, when insiders in the Bush administration make intimations toward war, foreign leaders are not likely to take them as idle threats.

I'm no fan of Bush, but I think there might be another dynamic at work here.
posted by psmealey at 1:32 PM on January 14, 2006


Don't know about the natural gas, but they do have a LOT of delicious pistachio nuts.
posted by fire&wings at 1:35 PM on January 14, 2006


Someone mentioned the possibility of a new cold war as a result of the situation with Iran. This is a possibility. However, the world survived the cold war because of mutually-assured destruction.

Would there be any such thing with a nuclear Iran?
posted by Afroblanco at 1:36 PM on January 14, 2006


If he continues with the Holocaust denying and the destroy Israel rhetoric, I can defintely see airstrikes before the 2008 election--God-willing.

That's what we do to people for talking about bombing other countries? We bomb their country?

Oh, and the Prince of Peace would like a word with you about throwing His name around.
posted by EarBucket at 1:37 PM on January 14, 2006


Be interesting to see how this all shakes out, because while Americans might be responsive to the "Iran is evil" rhetoric, they might not be real keen on the idea of oil at $100 per barrel...
posted by kgasmart at 1:40 PM on January 14, 2006


Everybody, be as cynical as you want, seriously... I'm guilty, for one.

However, when you look at the big picture, Iran actually does pose a threat, no matter how you spin the facts: they are actively seeking to build a nuclear arsenal, its leader has called for the obliteration of Israel, and the United States has pronounced it as "evil." While the last is more or less a subjective analysis by a bunch of idiots, it doesn't change the fact that, from Iran's perspective, the United States has declared it an enemy. And after the Iraq war, now they know we are serious. Kill or be killed from Iran's perspective... perhaps we should look at it this way as well? Just some food for thought.
posted by gagglezoomer at 1:51 PM on January 14, 2006


"That's what we do to people for talking about bombing other countries? We bomb their country?

No, we bomb their military and R&D facilities so that they stop sponsoring terrorism, etc.

"Oh, and the Prince of Peace would like a word with you about throwing His name around."

Who's that? That Jesus character? I don't believe in him.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:52 PM on January 14, 2006



No, we bomb their military and R&D facilities so that they stop sponsoring terrorism, etc.


You mean like this?
posted by gagglezoomer at 1:56 PM on January 14, 2006


How many bombs have we dropped on Iraq since we disbanded their military, and closed all their R&D facilities?
posted by Balisong at 1:56 PM on January 14, 2006


No, we bomb their military and R&D facilities so that they stop sponsoring terrorism, etc.

So. If we attack Iran and it turns out they don't have nuclear bombs, should the President be indicted? Just wondering.
posted by EarBucket at 1:56 PM on January 14, 2006


I'll have to think about that...
posted by ParisParamus at 1:59 PM on January 14, 2006



posted by Smedleyman at 2:00 PM on January 14, 2006


The scary thing is, at the start, nobody believes it'll happen. I mean, did you really think in February '02 that Iraq was going to be invaded?

No, I did not. I thought there was no way anyone would let this administration invade a country under what was so clearly flimsy premisses and intentional attempts to mislead the country. I mean, I barely pay attention to current events, less so then, and even I knew Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. I believed that there was no way in this day and age that America was capable of attacking another country that possed no direct and immediate threat to the US.

Holy fuck was I niave.


and this is why I can't fully believe that we won't attack Iran; it would be stupid, it would be costly, and it would be against everything we supposedly stand for. But so it was with Iraq.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 2:00 PM on January 14, 2006


Attacking Iran would make attacking, and occupying Iraq look like a cakewalk.
posted by Balisong at 2:01 PM on January 14, 2006


airstrikes ... God-willing

give it up Paris
posted by pwedza at 2:05 PM on January 14, 2006


Iran is much bigger, and the tactics would be different. But unless the Mullahs can be deposed from within, there's going to be a confrontation. You think the Christian Right is scary?! PAt Robertson may think Ariel Sharon was struck my lightining, but tacky theme park aspirations /= raising suicide bombers, etc.
posted by ParisParamus at 2:06 PM on January 14, 2006


Say, do saber scabards still rattle after the sword has been drawn and broken in another country?
posted by Balisong at 2:07 PM on January 14, 2006


OK, I give up. What am I left with?
posted by ParisParamus at 2:07 PM on January 14, 2006


Hot air?
posted by Balisong at 2:09 PM on January 14, 2006


I don't think a war with Iran is really that big of a problem. Honestly as long as those in power remember that the goal to prevent them from gaining nukes, rather then 'regime change'. It's not our job to change their regime.

Just bomb suspected nuke sites and their oil infrastructure. Iran will quickly see that they simply cannot exist as a modern nation without their oil infrastructure and will need to chose between nuke inspectors and a future as a nation.

Not one American would need to die, and we could actually give them warning about when and where the bombs would strike (not much they could do to stop them). We could inflict billions of dollars a month of damage to the Iranian economy.

That's what I would do if I were in charge. This can be settled without much blood (none on our part). Of course, at the cost of Oil. But I think allowing Iran to have nuclear weapons is a real problem.
posted by delmoi at 2:10 PM on January 14, 2006


I think the "spring training" for Iran will be Syria. As you know, I believe there's a treasure trove of WMDs and dirt on Iran in Syria. The country is relatively small, and with Israel to the south, and Lebanon where it is politically, taking out Assad will be fairly easy. Fairly....
posted by ParisParamus at 2:10 PM on January 14, 2006


A one link op-ed by Atrios. How is this possibly a good post?
posted by gyc at 2:11 PM on January 14, 2006


The problem is that their "Nukes" may be largely underground. Do we have non-nuclear weapons that can go through 30 feet of steel reinforced concrete?

Taking out their oil capacity will lead to prices reaching $100/b very quickly. Of course, if we were to get Iraq's capacity on line first...
posted by ParisParamus at 2:13 PM on January 14, 2006


You mean like this? - posted by gagglezoomer

Mmmm, no, really, more like this.

Or actually this.

Iran is much bigger, and the tactics would be different.

Yeah. I bought this line of shit before in the first round. Fool me once same on me. Fool me ... twice... you... you can't get fooled again.

I'm no one's mamaluk.

I agree with the premise that Iran shouldn't have nukes, and it's a bad regime. But after the bullshit that happened/is happening in Iran, I don't believe that is what this action is being predicated on.
Sorta like not getting into a car with a drunk driver who says he's ok. It's not going to happen. I have no reason to belive there is a danger given that the intelligence on Iraq was - at best - wrong.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:14 PM on January 14, 2006


The scary thing is, at the start, nobody believes it'll happen. I mean, did you really think in February '02 that Iraq was going to be invaded?

No, and I was quite shocked when I realized it might actually happen. Not to surprised that it did. And I was totally unsurprised by the nondiscovery of WMD.
posted by delmoi at 2:15 PM on January 14, 2006


Well, delmoi, you were the only one. Why didn't you call the President? You could have saved us a decade's worth of posts on Metafilter, and lots of lives.
posted by ParisParamus at 2:23 PM on January 14, 2006


Well, delmoi, you were the only one. Why didn't you call the President? You could have saved us a decade's worth of posts on Metafilter, and lots of lives.

The only one who what?
posted by delmoi at 2:24 PM on January 14, 2006


Who thought they weren't there.
posted by ParisParamus at 2:25 PM on January 14, 2006


Do we have non-nuclear weapons that can go through 30 feet of steel reinforced concrete?

Yes

And if WMD's are not found in Syria, in qualities and quantities to pose a serious threat, the president should be tortured until he confesses?
posted by Balisong at 2:26 PM on January 14, 2006


Who thought they weren't there.

You're an idiot.
posted by delmoi at 2:28 PM on January 14, 2006


Do we have non-nuclear weapons that can go through 30 feet of steel reinforced concrete?


What's this "we" shit Jody?
posted by Smedleyman at 2:33 PM on January 14, 2006


Don't know about the natural gas, but they do have a LOT of delicious pistachio nuts.

No blood for nuts!
posted by homunculus at 2:39 PM on January 14, 2006


. . . Never didn't think that they weren't ever not there?
posted by isopraxis at 2:40 PM on January 14, 2006


Sorry, I don't believe in torture; only inhumanly long hours without sleep reading Metafilter.
posted by ParisParamus at 2:41 PM on January 14, 2006


The great risk of going to war with Iran is upsetting Russia. Both countries have strong economic ties, and a warmer diplomatic situation than the US would like. Should the US undertake any action in Iran, we may destabilize the Eastern Euro and Asiatic diplomacies that we've sought to keep strong. I do not expect that, due to these reasons, that the US is willing to take the risk. If anything, the US and/or Israel may strike a blow at the reactors, and let that be that. Even this will cause great consternation, but the average American won't see that because a smooth operation, despite its consequences, will give heft via patriotic fervor on Fox &c back to this bumbling and arrogant administration. Further, Iran could respond by having a go at the US where we're the weakest and most bogged down: Iraq.
posted by moonbird at 2:41 PM on January 14, 2006


I don't think the MOAB is that much of a penetrator. The Grand Slam and Tallboys were penetrating bomb, but over half of their mass was in the hardened steel cases, and the movie is clearly a surface blast. As a successor to the daisy-cutter bombs (which were made to blow clear a helicopter landing zone), the implication is that they're surface bombs. The extra structure is needed because the bombs aren't slowed by parachute.

I do know that the US Army Arsenal, working with the USAF, had built a few penetrating rounds by using surplus WWII 8" naval gun barrels as the cases during the 1991 Gulf War, but I don't know if they were ever used or even adopted into the inventory.

Finally, even if the MOAB can be used as such, good luck to the cargo aircraft that gets to fly halfway across Iran to drop it.
posted by eriko at 2:43 PM on January 14, 2006


*not that our ties in Eastern Europe and Asia are that great anyway.
posted by moonbird at 2:43 PM on January 14, 2006


Good thing policy isn't determined on what you believe, huh, Paris.
posted by Balisong at 2:43 PM on January 14, 2006


moonbird, similar things were said before the Iraq war.
posted by ParisParamus at 2:43 PM on January 14, 2006


Who thought they weren't there.

Wow. You're not even a good troll, just a liar.
posted by Firas at 2:44 PM on January 14, 2006


If MOAB wouldn't do it, the Rods from God would.
posted by Balisong at 2:45 PM on January 14, 2006


Well, one thing is certain: whatever happens, you'll know where to find me posting..... ;- )
posted by ParisParamus at 2:46 PM on January 14, 2006


Want to further enrage an already anti-American majority in Iraq? Bomb and/or invade Iran. I hate to say it, but the inevitable military defeat of the US in a potential invasion would be a good thing. It would remind people that "nation building" is a stupid, wasteful effort.

And Paris, until you actually sign up and join the US military, you are nothing but a cowardly chickenhawk. Your "ideas" about the middle east will continue to be treated as such.
posted by bardic at 2:46 PM on January 14, 2006


Can someone write a program that just automatically searches out PP posts and flags them as "noise" or "derail"? It would save me a lot of trouble.
posted by papakwanz at 2:46 PM on January 14, 2006


you'll know where to find me posting

On LGF, I presume.
posted by Balisong at 2:48 PM on January 14, 2006


I don't know if they were ever used or even adopted into the inventory.

Where Google fails, Wikipedia succeeds. The MOAB isn't a penetrator, they're working on MOP, the Massive ordinance penetrate, a version of MOAB built for deep bunker attacks.

The weapon I was referring (using old 8" gun barrels) was in fact fielded as the GBU-28.
posted by eriko at 2:48 PM on January 14, 2006


Good thing policy isn't determined on what you believe...

This statement can be applied to Metafilter hundreds of times daily.
posted by Krrrlson at 2:49 PM on January 14, 2006


Who thought they weren't there.
posted by ParisParamus at 2:25 PM PST on January 14


You're either stupid or a liar or both.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 2:49 PM on January 14, 2006


I agree with ParisParamus that Bush should be impeached.
posted by Justinian at 2:52 PM on January 14, 2006


Say, Paris, you aren't "Rayra" on LGF, are you?

Naw, He has balls, and is ex-military. Just what IS your LGF handle, Paris? It sure isn't Parisparamus..
posted by Balisong at 2:55 PM on January 14, 2006


I seem to recall about this time last year, that Scott Ritter was predicting, almost guaranteeing a US attack on Iran in June of 2005. Didn't happen. Or, at least, I don't think it did. Or, maybe he just got the year wrong.
At the end of June 2005, he asserted that the war with Iran has already begun.
posted by Count Ziggurat at 3:01 PM on January 14, 2006


~~and Paris Disappears!~~
posted by Balisong at 3:13 PM on January 14, 2006


For my next trick, I will place Dios in a box, and saw him in half.

(then we will have two De-i..)
posted by Balisong at 3:18 PM on January 14, 2006


No, I am ParisParamus or ParamusParis EVERYWHERE.
posted by ParisParamus at 3:31 PM on January 14, 2006


A few thoughts from someone who read 5000 pages on Iran over the last three months...

Iran has very good historical reasons for distrusting the West, the US and Britain in particular. The story starts with Britain controlling Iran's oil wealth for the first half of the 20th century, and essentially engineering the society to be a British client state by keeping Iran dependent on British technicians and technology and by hand-selecting Brit-friendly leaders for the country. This continued through the fifties, when Mohammed Mossadeq managed to get elected Prime Minister, strip away much of the power of the monarchy, and institute a number of reforms to build a real live liberal democracy, complete with rule of law. But he stepped on some toes when he nationalized the oil industry to make Iran independent of the foreign powers that had been meddling with their politics and economy for as long as anyone could remember. This led, after an incredibly interesting political fireworks show, to the US engineering a coup to depose Mossadeq and put the Shah in a position of essentially limitless power. All Iranians knew about the US involvement in the coup, and was the start of their distaste for American influences.

The Shah worked very closely with the US, which had put him back in power, and used newly inflated oil profits to try to modernize and westernize Iranian society. Long story short, he moved to far too fast, and most of his reforms failed or only helped the extremely rich. He reversed all of the democratic gains under Mossadeq, and maintained one of the world's most extensive and infamous secret police organizations, known as SAVAK. He reintroduced dependence on the West by buying huge amounts of Western military technology, and then bringing in foreign specialists to keep things running. The rich got filthy rich, while the poor got far poorer. Also, pretty much everyone was offended by the way the Shah bought into Western culture (with an especial fondness for the French), and completely ignored modern Iranian culture.

All of this culminated in the revolution of 1978-9. The details aren't terribly important for this discussion. What does matter is that, at the start, it looked like a new democratic Iranian republic would be created, but when the dust finally cleared, Iran had the world's first Islamic Republic. Many of the features of a democracy were present, such as an elected parliament, judiciary, and president, but each of these bodies had an unelected religious parallel that had most of the defacto power: the Assembly of Experts, Guardian Council, and Supreme Leader, respectively. The Supreme Leader essentially had limitless veto and policy power, and all electoral candidates had to be approved by the Guardian council. The first Supreme Leader, who died in 1989, was the famous Ayatollah Khomeini. The new Republic was vehemently anti-American from the outset, as it saw the West (probably accurately) as part and parcel of the terrible times under the Shah. Following the America's temporary acceptance of the refugee Shah, the whole Iran-Contra affair (related to the Iran-Iraq war which lasted from 1981-1989) and some botched American covert ops, US-Iranian relations got even worse.

Following the death of Khomeini in 89, things started to thaw a bit, though. What needs to be understood is that Iranians are basically moderate, and generally have a strong belief in individual freedoms. Most are unhappy with having the clergy in power, and believe that politics and religion should be kept separate, as it reflects poorly on religion. People are also unhappy with the conservative 'morales police' who wander around and beat people up for being dressed inappropriately or walking in public with members of the opposite sex. All of this discontent led to a significant thaw under President Khatami, who was elected in the mid 90's. The thaw, though, led the conservatives to fear for losing their power, which led to the last couple elections being basically rigged. Right now we're witnessing an attempt by the conservatives to consolidate their power and retain the original ideas of the Islamic Republic, in the face of widespread discontent and opposition.

Iran is at a critical point in its history. As I see it, the whole nuclear program is a direct extension of Iranian distrust for the West, which is, in my humble opinion, entirely justified. There is significant potential for Iran to democratize and open up without another revolution, as was seen under Khatami. The framework is there, it just needs the right-wing clergy to lose a bit of power. (The opening of local elections under Khatami actually provides a way for that to happen, and, given public attitudes, isn't at all far fetched.)

Iranians don't want another revolution, and don't want another war: After witnessing the downsides of the last revolution and the horrors of the 8-year Iran-Iraq War, there is a general consensus for gradual reform over violent change. It would be tragic if the current leadership forced a new war with the West, but I don't think even they really want a war. Nuclear weapons, after all, are more a strategic deterrent than an offensive weapon. I think the nuclear program is a way to deter the West from meddling in Iranian affairs on a semi-permanent basis.

It seems to me that we should really just wait for the Iranian government to reform itself, as outsider meddling will only lead to resentment and worse relations. The Iranian people are very independent and very nationalistic: They want to do things for themselves and will certainly not trust any government that comes to power on the back of foreign influence. Unlike Iraqis, who are divided into a number of mutually distrustful cultural groups, Iranians (even non-Persian Iranians, like the Kurds) are very proud of being Iranian. We could, in the event of a war, expect a very coordinated, nation-wide resistance, more like the Vietnamese resistance than the fragmented Iraqi resistance. It doesn't make sense to invade Iran on the nuclear issue, because they don't, as far as I can tell, plan on using them unless provoked. Additionally, war would probably close off access to Iranian oil more-or-less indefinitely. It doesn't seem to be in any way in our interest.

For more info, I highly recommend the book "The Last Great Revolution," which sums up the present situation beautifully. Also highly worth reading is "The Mantle of the Prophet," which explores the relationship between Iranian politics and religion in greater depth than any other book I've seen.
posted by kaibutsu at 3:36 PM on January 14, 2006


I don't think a war with Iran is really that big of a problem. .... the goal to prevent them from gaining nukes, rather then 'regime change'....Just bomb suspected nuke sites and their oil infrastructure.... Not one American would need to die...We could inflict billions of dollars a month of damage to the Iranian economy...without much blood (none on our part). Of course, at the cost of Oil. But I think allowing Iran to have nuclear weapons is a real problem.


i think people like you are the real problem, not Geroge Bush. the vile self centered American who thinks like an average German in the 30's, talks like him and wants his government to go to more wars to prevent a hypothetical situation.

people like you are more dangerous than George Bush. You must be Hilary Clinton right? We are so glad that you are not in charge. Your logic is sick and smells of genocide. Let's hope the dollar will Crash or a civil war in USA would prevents another US military agression.
posted by sundaymag at 3:36 PM on January 14, 2006


Excellent, informative post, kaibutsu - I fear, though, that we will ignore the lessons of history, and certainly the American public, whom this sales pitch will be aimed at, will not be brought up to speed on the degree to which the west has meddled in Iran, the role that this meddling played in bringing the clerics to power in the first place.

America seems to think it's above history now - so powerful an actor that we are not subject to its gravitational pull. That, I think, is an attitude that's going to come around and kick us right in the ass, if it hasn't already, in Iraq.
posted by kgasmart at 3:47 PM on January 14, 2006


B.S. Paris. You're telling me that you have never posted a comment to LGF? You just read a lot, and quote here when it suits you, and visit their propaganda shop and buy T-shirts to flaunt in the liberal passers-by face, but have never posted a single comment?

I have had several LGF usernames, Balisong being one. My record is in history, but yours is not.

You are a sham in many areas of your life, it seems.
posted by Balisong at 3:55 PM on January 14, 2006


i think people like you are the real problem, not Geroge Bush. the vile self centered American who thinks like an average German in the 30's, talks like him and wants his government to go to more wars to prevent a hypothetical situation.

Hur hur. Says the guy who writes about how it's not anti-semetic to say that jews run the world, they do, but that's just because they're so smart!
posted by delmoi at 3:57 PM on January 14, 2006


OK maybe it's just that LGF has a lousy search function that doesn't work. Please link to one of your posts there. Pick any. They must all be gems.
posted by Balisong at 4:05 PM on January 14, 2006


Clueless semi-n00b question: LGF?
posted by Zinger at 4:05 PM on January 14, 2006


LGF

(Warning! Racist, Elitist, name calling, severly anti- non-American, non-Isreali bias Disturbing conversations.)
posted by Balisong at 4:09 PM on January 14, 2006


Bring 'em on.
posted by squalor at 4:10 PM on January 14, 2006


Balisong, I don't think I've posted more than five times ever over there, and nothing of any consequence (unlike here). But, just to show you, I'll find a thread and send the link to you.

Why are you astonished? LGF =great links plus crappy superficial banter.
posted by ParisParamus at 4:14 PM on January 14, 2006


Here, oh seeker of Truth...
posted by ParisParamus at 4:20 PM on January 14, 2006


Here, oh seeker of Truth...

Do you have anything that wasn't posted, oh. . .thirty seconds ago?
posted by EarBucket at 4:37 PM on January 14, 2006


Thanks, Balisong.
posted by Zinger at 4:40 PM on January 14, 2006


LGF =great links plus crappy superficial banter

If I was an ex-liberal who found himself aligned with the most utterly contemptible bunch of slope-browed knuckle-dragging sub-literate racist scumbags imaginable, I'd probably be telling myself that it was "superficial banter" too.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 4:43 PM on January 14, 2006


it's not anti-Semitic to say that Jews run the world That’s the intro to a long article, you are using typical partisan tactics to misrepresent me. read the whole article, you cannot judge me based on a little quote someone posted here from a long article.

and to answer your question about anti Semitism. i do think anti Semites are EQUAL HUMAN BEINGS. UN charter gives them that right. Nowhere in international law we have something about anti Semites being subhuman, or deserving extermination. anti Semitism is a specific from of racism. all racisms are equal.

certainly the genocidal call for war and destruction by people like you is just as bad as anti Semitism.

again i never said anti Semitism is OK. that’s a typical partisan and sensational lie by those who have malicious intent.

remember this is the same UN that created ISREAL.
posted by sundaymag at 4:43 PM on January 14, 2006


With the price of oil where it is already, invading Iran would be an exceptionally stupid thing to do.

We were absolutely determined to keep the oil flowing in Iraq, and we have mostly failed in that regard. If we can't do it in Iraq alone, it seems highly unlikely we can guard the oil infrastructure of TWO countries.

Demand is higher than it has ever been, with China hitting its stride as an industrialized power. Taking a huge source of supply offline would make the price runups in the 1970s look tame. $250/barrel oil wouldn't be entirely unlikely. Eventually, it would start dropping again, because at that price level Canada could start mining their tar sands. But it would be an immensely painful blow economically, and would probably sink this country entirely under the sea of debt it has accumulated.

My guess is that even Bush isn't this stupid... we won't invade Iran. And they will probably develop nukes... which we probably COULD have prevented if we hadn't gotten bogged down in the useless Iraq struggle.

In a very real way, the invasion of Iraq directly leads to Iran going nuclear. NOT a good outcome.

(btw, you may find it educational to fire up Google Earth... look up Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan. Think to yourself about just why Iran is nervous these days, particularly after being called part of an Axis of Evil.....)
posted by Malor at 4:54 PM on January 14, 2006


Malor: couldn't have said you are a clueless pacifist better myself....

In othe words Mr. Cause, meet Mr. Effect. Mr. Effect, your name is Effect, not Cause.
posted by ParisParamus at 4:58 PM on January 14, 2006


So that's a no, then.
posted by EarBucket at 5:04 PM on January 14, 2006


So what are you saying, Paris - invading Iran wouldn't jack up the price of oil?

Or maybe you're saying that most Americans would gladly pay upwards of $4 per gallon of unleaded so we can go unleash our holy goodness on Iran?
posted by kgasmart at 5:07 PM on January 14, 2006


Malor: couldn't have said you are a clueless pacifist better myself....

so, how many divisions do we have ready and available to invade iran? ... where's our logistics to take care of them?

ok, you say, we're only going to bomb them a little

what happens when they decide to retaliate by sinking a few oil tankers and cutting off the supply of persian gulf oil? ... what happens when they decide to give their agents in iraq the go ahead to raise all sorts of hell with our troops?

what happens if things escalate to an invasion and the russians or the chinese suddenly tell us that said invasion is not acceptable to them and they may do something about it?

there are real strategic and military problems with a confrontation with iran and to bring them up is not "clueless pacifism"

this is a dangerous and serious situation ... made even more so by the fact that we have legitimate reason to be concerned over iran's plans

there are limits to what we can do without all hell breaking loose ... especially when we're not prepared for all hell breaking loose
posted by pyramid termite at 5:17 PM on January 14, 2006


No, I am saying there are ways to minimize the inevitable shock. Also, the reference to pacifism comes from Mr. Malor blaming us for trying to defend ourselves in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I know, I know, if we just hadn't supported the Shah, and the fredom fighters in Afghanistan against the Soviets, then these Islamofascistterrorstmutants would never have been created.

B. S.
posted by ParisParamus at 5:24 PM on January 14, 2006


i don't think the shock can be reduced in any way that one could call minimal ... the consequences will be serious enough to be called a crisis

the worst part is, it may not be avoidable

i would disagree that we haven't done things that haven't aggravated the situation ... but it's useless anyway ... we're here now, and things aren't looking good
posted by pyramid termite at 5:30 PM on January 14, 2006


how many divisions do we have ready and available to invade iran?

None, but even if the US did rest assured Paris and his LGF brethren wouldn't be in them.
posted by bardic at 5:30 PM on January 14, 2006


Gee, bardic, that's also true for, say 99% of Americans. I guess we can never go to war--right? Or is it that only active military should be able to decide to go to war?
posted by ParisParamus at 5:33 PM on January 14, 2006


Also, Metafilter is my brotherhood! I have no "brethren at LGF!
posted by ParisParamus at 5:34 PM on January 14, 2006


Just bomb suspected nuke sites and their oil infrastructure. Iran will quickly see that they simply cannot exist as a modern nation without their oil infrastructure and will need to chose between nuke inspectors and a future as a nation.

Considering Iran has oil deals with China, the Chinese could screw our economy over pretty bad in retaliation if they wanted. I doubt the American public really has the stomach for another war. The "cry wolfawitz" effect?
posted by j-urb at 5:36 PM on January 14, 2006


I'm not talking about most Americans--I'm saying that you're an utter coward. If you were in the military, you'd probably be fragged pretty quickly anyways.

Honestly, adults are trying to have a conversation here, so please STFU, mkay?
posted by bardic at 5:39 PM on January 14, 2006


But I would never be in the military. I don't have the disposition of a soldier. Does that mean I should not have the right to argue that a given war or bombing is necessary and appropriate? Where does your arrogance, your desire to deprive me of the right to discuss foreign policy, stop? There's a reason why our country isn't run by a military junta.
posted by ParisParamus at 5:50 PM on January 14, 2006


"i would disagree that we haven't done things that haven't aggravated the situation ... but it's useless anyway ... we're here now, and things aren't looking good"

And it's all our fault, and America does everything wrong, and the Bushies are only in it for oil and to get money for Haliburton, and those beared guys in Teheran are really pussycats who just want to defend themselves from evil imperialiist America, right?
posted by ParisParamus at 5:53 PM on January 14, 2006


"1) Attack Muslims, who are, of course, Terrorists.

2) Attack Liberals, who are, of course, supporter of Terrorists.

3) Funnel more money to military contractors.

4) Justify more reductions in the rights of US Citizens."


1) Well, in Iran and Syria that's the case; no more so in Iraq.
2) Well, at least some are
3) Well, war tends to do that.
4) Feel free to name a few. I don't notice any difference. Actually, I feel more free now than pre- 9/11 and pre-President Bush.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:01 PM on January 14, 2006


Iran's sweet, benign regime (via LFG.com)
posted by ParisParamus at 6:06 PM on January 14, 2006


And it's all our fault, and America does everything wrong, and the Bushies are only in it for oil and to get money for Haliburton, and those beared guys in Teheran are really pussycats who just want to defend themselves from evil imperialiist America, right?

which part of useless didn't you seem to understand?

there will come a time when the histronics of both right and left will seem quaint, and perhaps tragic, if things don't go well

I don't have the disposition of a soldier.

there are thousands of soldiers in military cemetaries who did not have the disposition of a soldier, i'm sure
posted by pyramid termite at 6:08 PM on January 14, 2006


And so, your point is? No wars ever? Wars only with poor soldiers? Where are you going?
posted by ParisParamus at 6:09 PM on January 14, 2006


How about only with soldiers who previously didn't have the temperment to be a soldier, or older people who spout a lot of shit and refuse to back it up.
How about we have a real to life voulintary army.
I joined the Air Force in 1987. Just so they would pay for my colledge education.
I wouldn't have jouned if they were in-going to war at the time.

I wonder what our force would be if everyone who wished to leave was allowed, and everyone who rallied for war was conscripted.
posted by Balisong at 6:19 PM on January 14, 2006


In another time, I where a draft was still on, I would have served in Iraq, if necessary, probably in communications, or mess, or as a physician, or JAG, and have been proud to serve. But the fact that I am not serving, and will not be holding a rifle in Iraq or, if it happens, Iran (or North Korea or Syria--that's the short list of places that deserve military intervention...) should not change a thing. I am not in love with military interventions, but when they seem necessary, as Iraq did, and Iran might, I am proud to support them. So quit turning me into a cartoon. I'm sorry you can't handle reasoned dissent.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:19 PM on January 14, 2006


Your "dissent" is the cartoon.

You have not shown anywhere, where you aren't 100+ per-cent towards the actions going on in the world today.
You have rallied the bombing of anyone in the region, regardless of involvement.
You, sir, are a shill.
posted by Balisong at 6:23 PM on January 14, 2006


Not at all. There is/was a clear and obvious nexus/axis/loop/something between Iran, Syria and ex-Iraq. Whereas the Saudis connection to terrorism is primarily at the level of education/propaganda, Syria Iran and Saddam's regime all fund/ed and train/ed and pay for terrorists, suicide bombers, the whole deal. Iran takes our $$$ and blows up people on the streets of Baghdad and Jerusalem. And now Teheran is approaching having nukes.

The Axis of Evil nations (and Syria) are not just any countries. President Bush didn't speak of them arbitrarily. There are lots of odious, even dangerous regimes in the world, but these are special: they have lots of money, and are directed by the deranged. For our own security, as well as that of the unappreciative, demilitarized Europeans we need to act against Syria and Iran.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:31 PM on January 14, 2006


OK, Mr. Pseudo-Credentialed-I-Was-In-The-Military-To-Not-Have-Any-Student-Loans. Where do you think we should invade, or where do you think I think we should? The Big Three are now Syria, Iran and North Korea. I don't think the last poses enough of a threat, but the other two deserve consideration.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:34 PM on January 14, 2006


So, Paris.

Once we invade Syria, and nothing is found, what do you propose we take away from all those that led us there? their right foot? All privacy? And when we invade Iran and nothing is found there, do we take both your hands? do we take all your possessions? It's not like we are fighting them to save what we already have, we will loose all that we already have in the process of fighting them, as the Patriot Act and elsewhere has shown.
Any qualifier that "that's the way they do things in Iran" will be moot. It will/has happened here, too.
You will be the cause, You will be the one we will blame.
posted by Balisong at 6:38 PM on January 14, 2006


my point is that you're making some rather trivial and insubstantial arguments ... as insubstantial as some of the left's which you parody

it would be nice to live in a world without war ... i don't see that happening anytime soon

when a major war, such as ww2 occurs, people get drafted whether they have the disposition or not

where am i going?

the question is, "where are WE going?"

references to handbaskets and hell seem unfortunately appropriate

this crisis, if it happens, is not something you or i will be able to live through and sit casually in front of our computers as if nothing about it can affect us ... we will discover that a few lunatics with suicide bombs are nothing compared to a major asian war

as much as i disagree with bush about many things, i cannot believe that he is not mindful of the serious potential of this situation

our "war on terror" will be a sunday school picnic next to this

some thoughts from a somewhat better president than bush

"Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence (I conjure you to believe me, fellow-citizens) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake, since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government. But that jealousy to be useful must be impartial; else it becomes the instrument of the very influence to be avoided, instead of a defense against it. Excessive partiality for one foreign nation and excessive dislike of another cause those whom they actuate to see danger only on one side, and serve to veil and even second the arts of influence on the other. Real patriots who may resist the intrigues of the favorite are liable to become suspected and odious, while its tools and dupes usurp the applause and confidence of the people, to surrender their interests.

The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. So far as we have already formed engagements, let them be fulfilled with perfect good faith. Here let us stop. Europe has a set of primary interests which to us have none; or a very remote relation. Hence she must be engaged in frequent controversies, the causes of which are essentially foreign to our concerns. Hence, therefore, it must be unwise in us to implicate ourselves by artificial ties in the ordinary vicissitudes of her politics, or the ordinary combinations and collisions of her friendships or enmities.

Our detached and distant situation invites and enables us to pursue a different course. If we remain one people under an efficient government. the period is not far off when we may defy material injury from external annoyance; when we may take such an attitude as will cause the neutrality we may at any time resolve upon to be scrupulously respected; when belligerent nations, under the impossibility of making acquisitions upon us, will not lightly hazard the giving us provocation; when we may choose peace or war, as our interest, guided by justice, shall counsel. "


and -

"The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty."

george washington

i might point out that a "more formal and permanent despotism" might not come from the republican side, but could well come from the left

my points? ... our entanglement in the world's affairs is growing to the point where it may be truly dangerous for us ... we cannot be totally removed in this day and age ... but we are becoming too involved for our own good

and the resulting partisan bickering that many are indulging in has its own dangers

on preview -

For our own security, as well as that of the unappreciative, demilitarized Europeans we need to act against Syria and Iran.

then soon, our president and the people who support him need to not only tell the nation of the seriousness of the situation, but to warn the nation that sacrifices, such as a draft, such as gas rationing and a severe reduction of our current lifestyle may become necessities

it's my opinion that the time has not come yet for us to say that an invasion of iran is necessary

(and as a thought ... what gives you the idea that the russians wouldn't rather invade and/or subvert their government instead? ... it wouldn't be the first time ... and they're better placed to do it than we are)
posted by pyramid termite at 6:39 PM on January 14, 2006


I still have $7400 in student loans. I only took out $4300. Interest is a bitch, huh?
Fuck you , Paris!
posted by Balisong at 6:39 PM on January 14, 2006


"Until the likes of the US and the UK give up their nukes and decomission their own nuclear power installations they have precisely no moral right to tell anyone else to do the same. Period. We're hypocrites to go after Iran or anyone else and we should practice what we preach or shut the fuck up. It's embarrassing.
posted by Decani at 4:21 PM EST on January 14 [!]"

Yes, because wacky fundamentalist Muslims are no worse than the UK or the US, right?

You are correct, if everyone is equal, and madness and primitive deranged cultures do not really exist.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:40 PM on January 14, 2006


Paris, most cowards at least have the dignity to not demean the military service of others.

I didn't think it would be possible for me to lower my expectations of you any further.
posted by bardic at 6:43 PM on January 14, 2006


It's quite simplistic (and rather uninformed) to presume the Iran or Syria are directed by the 'deranged'. Characterizing leaders as deranged is just a propaganda technique; Saddam was called a 'madman' various times to bolster the argument for an Iraq invasion. He didn't do anything stupid even as he was being destroyed.

Surviving in a modern Middle Eastern government is not a fools' game. You can't be an ex-drunk with farmboy charm and presume to capture the Presidency. These are calculating, Machiavellian politicians.

Syria is admittedly a pretty belligerent regime that has too much fun involving itself in others' affairs. Iran does that to an extent too, but there are very smooth players leading the country. Underestimating the regime in Iran is a mistake.

As a rule, Arab regimes tend to bluster and bloviate about Israel, especially when they're in trouble and in need of domestic support (cf. Saddam). You think a country intent on attacking Israel would announce it?

Anyway. My point was that Iran's regime, despite being 'bad', has a complicated relationship with the people there and is definitely not lock-in-step with the Arab regimes; quite the opposite. You know what makes the Middle East so unstable so often? Not hatred of Israel or America, but identity politics, bigotry, and internal fragmentation. Viewing Iran simply through its relationship with the USA is ridiculous. The West has never done any good for the country in its muddled and exploitative interventions.

The question is ultimately, are you more worried about attacks on the United States or regional disturbances? My money is on the fact the USA has far more to worry about when governments harass other governments within politically unstable regions than about being attacked directly. And if you're going to focus on the latter problem (in the Balkans, Chechnya, Sudan, Kashmir, Palestine, or Taiwan—and this applies to an extent to countries that have vicious internal conflicts that don't affect other countries too much, eg. Uzbekistan, Sri Lanka, Tibet, the Philipines), you need to think in terms of the people living there, not deranged fears of people watching Fox News across the Atlantic.
posted by Firas at 6:52 PM on January 14, 2006


primitive deranged cultures</em

Where to begin with such ignorance? First off, does this type of statement remind you of a guy with a funny mustache who came to power in the 1930's?

Did you read any of the rather thoughtful comments in this thread? By many accounts, the Iranian populace doesn't like their leaders either--they're a well-educated, cosmopolitan group, not a bunch of sheep herders living in mud huts. Why are you so dense as to think that only bombing the hell out of another country is the only option?

There were signs of a thaw during the last two decades in the Iranian regime--guess what derailed it, idiot? I have no love for the mullahs either, but sometimes countries move in the right direction on their own without (gasp!) intervention on the part of the American military.

Do you really think people like being bombed? Can you wrap your pea brain around the fact that as much as Iraqis hated Saddam, they hate being bombed and occupied as well?

Given your attitudes towards arabs, persians, and south Americans (your delightful quip that all Venezuelans are "peasants") it's clear that your not the charming conservative troll many take you for--your a small-minded bigot and I'll ignore you as such.

posted by bardic at 6:56 PM on January 14, 2006


*didn't unclick italics, ick*

primitive deranged cultures is Paris' quotation.
posted by bardic at 6:57 PM on January 14, 2006


President Bush didn't speak of them arbitrarily.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:31 PM PST on January

According to David Frum, he did.

Look, you're linking to stuff from Little Green Footballs and you expect people to take you seriously?

You sound like every other Republican "thinker" out there.

You, like the denizens of The Corner, LGF, conservative pundits and seemingly 90% of the current administration out of your depth, parroting the same old, talking point driven arguments of a morally and intellectually bankrupt ideal that doesn't play out in the real world.
posted by Relay at 6:59 PM on January 14, 2006


Paris, have you ever fired a weapon?
Any gun, ever? Rifle? Pistol? Crossbow? Slingshot?
I have a Beretta strapped to my ankle as we [write]. I have a 1911 .45 and a Ruger P89 .9mm within reach every time I look at these forums.

I am no pacifist. I am usually armed everywhere I go. Just in case I run into Terrorists. You, on the other hand, throw all your trust into the Federal Government. Just like everyone in New Orleans did. A lot of good it did them.

The more power you give the Federal Government to solve your (perceived) problems, the more you will be fucked by the Federal Government, with no real protection.

You are the problem. Not the Terrorists, Not the Liberals.
It's not the object of the military to make you safe. Not to make you safe to ride your bike through downdown Manhattan, Not to make you safe to buy gas for less than $2.00 a gallon. You have sufficiently diluded yourself.
You are a shill, and cannot even say why.
The reasons you think you are safe are a lie. This war in Iraq do not make you any safer because of that lie.

I blame you.
posted by Balisong at 7:00 PM on January 14, 2006


I have a Beretta strapped to my ankle as we [write]. I have a 1911 .45 and a Ruger P89 .9mm within reach every time I look at these forums.

i had no idea metafilter was so dangerous
posted by pyramid termite at 7:02 PM on January 14, 2006


Yes I have fired a rifle, but that's it. You going off topic. Are you drunk? It's ok, it's a Saturday night.

My comment about feeling more free or as free was in response to people who claim that the Bush Administration is responsible for making the US more of a police state (internally). That sounds really ominous, but I don't see any evidence of it. Or feel any evidence of it.

Thank you for blaming me. I blame FiveFreshFish.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:04 PM on January 14, 2006


This is {DEAD} serious buisiness.
posted by Balisong at 7:04 PM on January 14, 2006


Actually, I blame the Democrats for being such wusses and pandering so hard to the Left that I've been forced to turn in my card.

OK, I lost my card, but you get the idea.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:10 PM on January 14, 2006


I'll be sure and look to save your sorry ass when the Jihadist paratroupers parachute in a-la Red Dawn.
That will never happen. You know that, I know that.
The only real threat I have is from our own military/police.

It's useless for Americans to buy AK-47's. If you really want to use ammo off of dead enemys, get yourself a good Beretta .9mm, or .40 cal. , or a Bushmaster, or Ruger .223 . That's what US forces use. Those will be the people in black facemasks that come crashing through your livingroom window. Not anybody in a turban.
But keep it up about Iran and their "real threat"..
It keeps people quaking in their burkenstocks.
posted by Balisong at 7:12 PM on January 14, 2006


I blame the Democrats for being such wusses and pandering so hard to the Left

yes, they've pandered so hard to the left that we still don't have national health insurance

and bush has pandered so hard to the right that we still don't have a balanced budget

about the only people they really pander to is the people who give them campaign contributions and lobby them ... and believe me, that's not you and me

why are people so partisan over two brands of such utter mediocrity and self-serving demogoguery?

but i guess that's off topic, so i'll leave it ...
posted by pyramid termite at 7:15 PM on January 14, 2006


Allright, I un-strapped the pistol from my ankle.
I hope this thread doesn't get out of control.
posted by Balisong at 7:32 PM on January 14, 2006


it also depends on how prepped we are for a draft

a small nuke will be detonated on american soil. within hours the iranian perpetrators will be positively identified through rental truck and immigration records. hundreds of thousands will volunteer for military service. elections will be suspended. we will be at war, after all. europeans will wail and knash teeth as we rain fire on the middle east. china and russia will make ugly sounds in our general direction. it will be interesting times. you will wish you did not have children/grandchildren.
posted by quonsar at 7:39 PM on January 14, 2006


Bah.. My wife is pregnant.
I wish you hadn't posted that, quonsar.
posted by Balisong at 7:44 PM on January 14, 2006


But I still wouldn't put it past Bush-Neocons-GOP to sacrifice a medium-large city in hopes to retain power past 2008 "elections".
posted by Balisong at 7:46 PM on January 14, 2006


and gain control of the world's oil fields.
posted by quonsar at 7:48 PM on January 14, 2006


before china does.
posted by quonsar at 7:48 PM on January 14, 2006


* tumbleweeds blow across the remnants of an american city, glowing in the dark ... in the distance we hear the hum of a motorcycle ... mel gibson appears over a hill ...*
posted by pyramid termite at 7:53 PM on January 14, 2006


quonsar's book reaches #1 on the NY Times list, first in the fiction section, then later in the non-fiction section.
posted by furtive at 8:01 PM on January 14, 2006


** balisong has an accidental discharge while masturbating furiously **
posted by furtive at 8:02 PM on January 14, 2006


But I still wouldn't put it past Bush-Neocons-GOP to sacrifice a medium-large city in hopes to retain power past 2008 "elections".

Can anyone seriously envision living in a post-Yoo Memorandum USA under President Hillary Clinton (for instance)?

Why would the administration be so comfortable setting all these new precedents?

Offhand, the only thing that comes to mind is that they don't intend for there to ever be any such situation.
posted by sonofsamiam at 8:16 PM on January 14, 2006


In the name of France, just call him Paramus from now on.

Keep in mind that we aren't really at war. Congress never declared it and hasn't since 1941. All of the "war-time preznit" crap 'allowing' him to go above the law with jolly flag-waving at Fox and Friends is a damn farce. We've already gone way over 2003's congressional mandate. Good luck getting congress to go along with an Iranian "war." Bush, PP and all the lot, meet the hole that you've dug yourself and hop in. Even the over-saturated public will not support more dead soldiers, and you know it. Game's up.
posted by moonbird at 8:16 PM on January 14, 2006


people like you are more dangerous than George Bush. You must be Hilary Clinton right? We are so glad that you are not in charge. Your logic is sick and smells of genocide. Let's hope the dollar will Crash or a civil war in USA would prevents another US military agression.

I don't mean to derail, but you do realize that if the U.S. economy crashed, Canada's would go right along with it, don't you? That, and the dollar crashing suddenly would be bad for Canada and Europe.

Please think before you post ill-informed, inflammatory drivel like that.
posted by oaf at 8:19 PM on January 14, 2006


q is right--either a nuke in a Blue city, or a bio thing in a mall somewhere, and it won't have been done by any foreigners.
posted by amberglow at 8:22 PM on January 14, 2006


Now, I do love to indulge in all sorts of conspiracy theories about the Bush administration, because I hate them. However, in the interest of clear thinking, one must apply Occam's Razor:

1. Invading Iraq was a top Bush admin priority--it was on the table at his very first cabinet meeting in January 2001.

2. Bush et al were strongly advised that al-Qaeda was a huge threat, and chose to ignore it.

3. When we were attacked on 9/11, it did not spur a new direction in Bush's foreign policy. He did have to launch a war in Afghanistan, but be honest: only enough has been done there to keep up appearances. They obviously do not give a shit what goes on there. Instead, 9/11 was used to bang the war drum for Iraq.

4. So: 9/11 had nothing to do with Bush's plans for aggression. Therefore, it likely was not an internal plot--his focus has always been Iraq.

5. This raises the question: why are we really in Iraq? My personal opinion is guided, again, by seeking the most simple explanation: money and oil. I think the Iraq war, for the Bush team, is a.) a pre-emptive strike in a looming global energy resource conflict, and b.) a great way to make a lot of money. (Remember that nearly all of Bush's original cabinet were oil industry people.)

6. This means, in terms of this discussion, two things: a.) The Bush team's actions thus far should not be considered as indicitive of possible courses of action in Iran, and b.) there is no evidence in prior behavior to seriously indicate that there could be a staged terrorist attack on US soil to generate public support for a war effort in Iran. (Not that this possibility is beyond the imagination of the US government--there actually is precedent in our dealings with Cuba around the Bay of Pigs.)

7. Considering how incompetently this team executed a war they wanted (Iraq), I shudder to think how clumsily they will handle the situation with Iran.

8. The real loose cannon in this situation is Bush himself--I actually trust Cheney's and Rumsfeld's greed and power-mongering. I understand those motives. Bush, however, is a zealot, and there's no telling what's going on in his mind. If the whole Zionist/end times bullshit has really gripped his imagination, all bets are off. Don't forget he's a cokehead-alcoholic who traded those addictions for the addiction of fundamentalist religion.

FWIW.
posted by LooseFilter at 8:51 PM on January 14, 2006


Paramus, the Afghanistan invasion could be justified as self-defense. I didn't like it much at the time, but I was convinced later by Clarke's book that it was, in fact, the right thing to do.

Calling the invasion of Iraq self-defense, on the other hand, is completely indefensible. How can you actually write that with a straight face?
posted by Malor at 9:31 PM on January 14, 2006


Loosefilter: being a "war president" gives you "political capital" to run your [backers'] agenda through Congress.

The Reaganauts noticed this dynamic with Thatcher in '82, so got a hard-on for it with Lebanon, Grenada, and Libya.

Bush's would-be biographer, interviewing him in 1999 says now that Bush wanted to be a war president for just that reason:
'One of the keys to being seen as a great leader is to be seen as a commander-in-chief.' And he said, 'My father had all this political capital built up when he drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait and he wasted it.' He said, 'If I have a chance to invade·.if I had that much capital, I'm not going to waste it. I'm going to get everything passed that I want to get passed and I'm going to have a successful presidency.
ps I love how the righties are so willing to throw Other People's Money (namely our childrens' and grandchildrens') and Other People's Lives (the poor suckers who thought the military was a good deal to get a leg up on life) at the worlds' problems. Odious mofos.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:38 PM on January 14, 2006


Heywood: good point. Odious mofos indeed.
posted by LooseFilter at 9:40 PM on January 14, 2006


Malor, once you read PP's writings here with the image of him three sheets to the wind on some spendy booze it all makes sense.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:41 PM on January 14, 2006


Night Train is spendy booze now? ; >
posted by amberglow at 9:59 PM on January 14, 2006


balisong you should not be drinking and playing with firearms!
posted by delmoi at 10:12 PM on January 14, 2006


I think quonsar wins. Unfortunately.
posted by kgasmart at 10:13 PM on January 14, 2006


If we keep this shit up long enough, China is going to extend its protection to the Middle East in its own self-interest, and tell the USA to back off to its own side of the oceans.

"Late last month, a joint venture between ONGC and China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) emerged as the winning bidder for Alberta-based Petro-Canada's oil-producing assets in Syria, acquiring a 38% stake in the Al Furat oilfield, in what is seen by analysts as heralding the beginning of cooperation between Beijing and New Delhi in securing energy supplies to fuel their booming economies."
-- http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Japan/HA13Dh01.html
posted by hank at 10:56 PM on January 14, 2006


The Big Three are now Syria, Iran and North Korea. I don't think the last poses enough of a threat, but the other two deserve consideration.

The last one is the one with a serious military build up -- 'mericans aren't stupid, they know a country in a disastrous state like pre-invasion Iraq is more than enough to put themselves in a quagmire.
posted by NewBornHippy at 11:24 PM on January 14, 2006


The point of all this is:

1. Eliminate or drastically reduce all US citizens who are capable of leading a revolution against the government;

2. Use the war on terrorism to convince the remaining citizens to allow the last of their rights to be eroded in exchange for greater security and protection against unseen evils;

3. Create or take advantage of a situation in which martial law can be enabled for all major cities; and

4. Turn the remaining population into disposable slave labor for the wealthy.

Of course, I'm just speculating.
posted by deusdiabolus at 12:01 AM on January 15, 2006


But I would never be in the military. I don't have the disposition of a soldier. Does that mean I should not have the right to argue that a given war or bombing is necessary and appropriate? Where does your arrogance, your desire to deprive me of the right to discuss foreign policy, stop? There's a reason why our country isn't run by a military junta.
posted by ParisParamus at 5:50 PM PST on January 14


If you so strongly believe that the only way to solve international problems is through killing civilians of other countries as well as getting our own men and women killed, you should sign up and share the risk. Some of us don't think every problem is solved by the murder of men, women, and children, by bombs that tear apart schools and churches, homes and hospitals, that make children into orphans and parents into mourners.

The world is run by bullies and criminals who would be utterly powerless if not for cowardly toads like you, Paris, who lust for bloodshed, ruin, and twisted glory in an effort to make your sad, tiny lives worth living.

From what do you need protection when your soul is already dead?
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:17 AM on January 15, 2006


It would be tragic if the current leadership forced a new war with the West.

is this opinion the result of reading 5000 pages about Iran? One only needs to read four pages of NYT to find out it's the USA and Israel leadership who are pushing for the war, NOT the Iranian leaders.

Iranian arguments in point form:

1- israel is an illegitimate political entity and needs to be wiped off the map. (assessment: if one thinks of israel as a political system of a Jewish apartheid state, then wiping it off the map could resemble a post apartheid south Africa. did dismantling of apartheid mean wiping off the white south Africans off the face of the planet? hardly. As much as Zionists may hate the Iranian proposal, it is hysterical to suggest that the Iranian claim translates into a nuclear annihilation of Israel. statements like this are radical declaration for buying popularity among Muslims worldwide. they have been maintained for over 25 years and do not effectively change anything)

2-if the west really believes in holocaust, why didn't they expense land from their own territory? If the Jewish State moves to Israel Iran will recognize it as a legitimate State. We think Holocaust is highly exaggerated and is a myth (assessment: another wild card, it is also denying the west its moral superiority in the world war 2, if holocaust is a myth, then there can never be a good war. a weak and mistaken argument that has proven wrong time and time again by historians in universities and courts. It can only be used as an internal propaganda where universities and courts have not proved the validity of holocaust as a historical fact. It is harmful to the Iranian cause, it is a bigoted statement as much as an Israeli official calling Palestinians the cancer of Israeli society -many times repeated in israel by many figures)

3-We like to develop a nuclear program for peaceful purposes under supervision of the international atomic agency, but we would have to define the details of this program and the west's participation in controlling of it.

as vile, rude, inhuman and bigoted the Iranian statements, how could any of this being interpreted as a direct or indirect forcing of a war?

Mr. Iranian expert, tell me how did you arrive at this opinion?

ps. out of fairness, so much of what you were saying is accurate and dead on.

can I suggest another 500 pages of reading for you? this is the book you missed to read yourself, or mention to your average ignorant English readers.

IRAN BETWEEN TWO REVOLUTIONS BY ARVAND ABRAHAMIAN
posted by sundaymag at 1:16 AM on January 15, 2006


Does that mean I should not have the right to argue that a given war or bombing is necessary and appropriate? - posted by ParisParamus

No. It means you can't say "we."

Like when you say "we" should Kill as many Islamofascists as possible in Iraq, Afghanistan, and perhaps, Iran. And the West Bank and Gaza. Depose or assasinate Assad. Foment democratic revolution in Iran, or, if that fails, kill the Mullahs in Tehran.

Or hopefully, some local will assasinate Chavez.

Or I'm all for going in with the Marines and shooting the guy

You seem to prefer to avoid the dangers you urge on others.

Much like the one eyed ranger who you hoped would
participate in the upcoming invasion of Syria I've actually served my country and been in combat while you spoke with a Captain who reassured me that I can better serve my country, and the fight against Evil by confronting asinine Leftist thought here (on metafilter).

Perhaps this wouldn't be a problem if you didn't talk tough and say your agenda is to not to be a coward in the face of terrorism and evil while castigating those who seek peaceful methods as pacifist cowards or the mothers of men who died in combat as deluded fools.

For you human life is cheap. For you it is moral to kill someone who verbally threatens you.

You have the right to say anything you will.(Oddly you continually call for the banning of other members* including myself for various comments made here - perhaps not surprising though if your willing to kill someone - or rather urge someone else to kill for you - over words)

* Too numberous to post

The right to argue policy or whatever the hell it is you're on about does not grant you the right to have respect.

Anyone who questions your courage, your patriotism, your honor has just as much right to do so as you have to make your case.

Indeed, given your comments, they deserve the respect given those who have clear perceptions and make honest observations.

It is these observations which make clear that you are at best a hypocrite and lack the conviction of your ideals.

Whereas the proof of my own convictions have been etched into the bone in my leg and the scar tissue on my skill. This does not make my opinion on policy any more valid than yours. But it does mean that when I say we should do "x" that I have proven I am willing to give time, effort, money, or shed blood or even die if need be.

It also means I get to say "we" As in I will go in with the Marines and shoot the guy.

Reading your posts, I don't think you're an evil man. By your definition I am: Once someone is responsible for murdering another, they are fair game.

Beyond that of course there's the numerous "metahitler" "dickheads" you call us, I'm among those here in your opinion: "taking a stand against the dictators, their minions and econowhores; and Islamofasts" I've opposed nearly your entire scope of thought.

So come and kill me then. You're a lawyer. You apparently know international law as well. I'd be happy to pay for plane fare out somewhere and you can put a gun to my head and pull the trigger. My e-mail is posted and we can discuss the hows and wheres. I'm sure you can arrange whatever security you feel comfortable with, whatever legalities need to be dispensed with, avoided, etc. - I'll sign whatever you wish.
If you really think we're the mefi-scum that we are and you honestly want to kill those who help "Islamofascists" with this talk of ours or whatever and avoid danger in doing so come and take my life and you can see what it is you're talking about first hand. You don't have to sign up for anything. You don't have to do a damn thing but pull a trigger.
I've done it. I know your thoughts on it now.

I'd like to see how you think it is afterward.

...well, really I wouldn't be able to with a bullet in my head, but y'know, it's a figure of speech.

I respect the pacifists for their compassion and strength, because I think killing is too damned easy.

But we can see afterwards....well, you can anyway.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:21 AM on January 15, 2006 [1 favorite]


Incidently, excellent comments and assessments otherwise in the thread.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:24 AM on January 15, 2006


I'm tired of war, and rhetoric, and left vs. right, and nukes, and what have you. I'm going to change the channel, but before I do, here's a big fat middle finger to everyone who doesn't think we should mind our own business.

Like the 5000-pages poster said, Iranians are doing fine on their own. It took the world's first Islamic Republic to get them 20 years of peace, and in that time, what have they become? I'm not talking about the government, I'm talking about Iranian people. They're doing fine. They don't like the morality police. They might be Muslim but internally they're trying to create a democratic state that will respect them and let them live their lives. They have modern infrastructure and education. I wish Bush and the rest of the people pushing for intervention would remember this.

If I were in charge, the US's only military foreign policy interventions would be kidnappings. Assad, the mullahs in Iran, Kim Jong-Il and his son, the leader of the Maoists in Nepal, and that Turkomen motherfucker all deserve house arrest and mandatory Rasta boot camp in Trinidad. Is that even possible? I guess this is why I'm not in charge.
posted by saysthis at 2:58 AM on January 15, 2006



In othe words Mr. Cause, meet Mr. Effect. Mr. Effect, your name is Effect, not Cause.



This is pretty much the worst analogy ever.
posted by wakko at 3:37 AM on January 15, 2006


Smedleyman writes "So come and kill me then."

Excellent post. Thanks. (I thank you at greater length here.)
posted by orthogonality at 4:29 AM on January 15, 2006


We can't invade Iran, we don't have enough troops. The fact is, the chickens are coming home to roost after the Iraq war debacle and our failure to capture bin Laden and quell the forces of AlQaeda. Had we spent our money and energy in Afghanistan putting down the Taliban and quashing AlQaeda instead of offering a haven and training ground in Iraq, the world would be a very different place today.
posted by LynnHayes at 4:57 AM on January 15, 2006


as pointed out above, a "terror attack" or two will more than adequately fix the troop shortage.
posted by quonsar at 5:05 AM on January 15, 2006


"...trying to defend ourselves in Iraq and Afghanistan."

The US was never threatened by Iraq.

Before the war, former lead UNSCOM inspector and Marine Scott Ritter indicated that 90-95% of all WMDs were accounted for. That's a huge accomplishment, with a verified level of disarmament that can only be called a stunning success in comparison to the historical average for disarmament campaigns. That is precisely why both Powell and Rice gave speeches pre 9/11 indicating that Iraq had disarmed and was effectively isolated.

"What we need to watch is Iran's vile President. If he continues with the Holocaust denying and the destroy Israel rhetoric, I can defintely see airstrikes before the 2008 election--God-willing."

The obvious question to ask here is why should we care about a relatively small country of no great strategic importance to the point where the US should launch a dubious, illegal preemptive attack that would likely result in the death of many US soldiers and the destabilization of Iraq, Afghanistan, etc?

The future threat we face -- the possibility of yet another Arab-Israel war that could potentially go nuclear -- would arguably be of less strategic impact on the US than Iraq's invasion of Kuwait was, certainly. It certainly pales to the possibility of a North Korean attack on South Korea, a Chinese attack on Russia or Taiwan, another Indian / Pakistani war, A Russian attack on Georgia or Ukraine or ... all places with many, many times the amount of people than Israel.

The world ain't gonna end if Israel gets nuked / nukes its neighbors, no matter what the Bible says. The book of Revelations is most likely bunk... more likely to be a case of bad seafood than divine inspiration. If I were a Christian, I would seriously consider throwing away a bad, worse-than-useless book of the Bible, and concentrate instead on being a good follower of Jesus. Being opposed to killing each other and screwing over thy neighbor would be a good first step.
posted by insomnia_lj at 5:17 AM on January 15, 2006


quonsar, we need more than bodies ... we need equipment ... we need transport ... we need training ... and we need time, probably at least a year or two, to get all that together

and then we need a way to put it where we want it without hidden cruise missles sinking our transport ships

we also need china and russia to butt the hell out

the first requirements would be possible for us to get ... but the last two may not be ... china has a great interest in insuring that they get a piece of the oil flow and they may not trust us to do that for them

the time is going to come when russia, china, india and even pakistan are going to be running the show in asia and we are not going to be able to prevent this ... they all have nukes and they all have strong opinions about what they want ... i don't think any of them want our country having control of the middle east and its oil ... i also don't think they want a bunch of terrorists running around causing trouble for them

i think we have to be realistic about what we can do ... and i think that bush's experience with iraq may have taught him something about the difficulty of enforcing our will halfway across the world
posted by pyramid termite at 5:45 AM on January 15, 2006


Iraq was run down, and bombed, for more than ten years before the U.S. finally got around to invading. While this crippled the Iraqi military, it also radically changed structures within the country - greatly centralizing control and eliminating most forms of opposition. This is part of the reason Iraq is in such bad shape now.

While I condemn the notion of an American invasion of Iran on principal, I think it is important to understand as many aspects as possible.

It might be too much to say that Iran has been modernizing for the last fifteen years (maybe not too much at all...), but they certainly haven't been suffering the degradation that Iraq saw. Iran's military is far more powerful, of course. They also have a much larger population, especially of young people, many highly educated. Finally, Iran has a much more sophisticated political system, with an organized opposition and a sophisticated, if not exactly free and open, media. Iran might be able to recover at the other end of invasion more quickly and peacefully than Iraq...

Even though Iran's armed forces are larger and more sophisticated technologically, they will fail quickly in open conflict against the Americans. On the other hand an Iranian insurgency will be fueled by a larger population. The real military question is, how much and what type of ordinance will be accessible to a potential insurgency.

In Iraq, one of the major American failings was their inability to secure weapons stockpiles (well, they probably didn't even try...), apparently Iraq was littered with ordinance. To some extent the insurgency in Iraq is limited by the type of equipment that was seized from those stockpiles. Some reports suggest they are running out of mortars, they have RPGs, but they don't have more powerful anti-tank weapons or shoulder launched anti-aircraft weapons. The will of the people to launch an insurgency is more important than the equipment, of course, but the equipment will have a significant effect on the number of dead and injured American soldiers.

Anyway... It is a terrible idea.
posted by Chuckles at 5:57 AM on January 15, 2006


pyramid, the difference between Iraq and Iran is that the Europeans can't pretend that Iran is not dangerous, the way they did with Iraq--I don't even think the Euro-weasles are willing to look the other way this time; re a nuclear, Holocaust-denying, terrorist-loving, Israel hating Iran. And those same statements by Iran will neutralize the American Left sufficiently as well. So, there may, in fact be an alliance on opposing Iran, be it military blockade, or sanctions that hurt, or military action. Maybe Iran is, even, the UN's last chance before we defund it into total irrelevancy?

I'm not that concerned with China or Russia. They may huff and puff, but they need the US too much to do anything serious. Especially China, which, in my estimation, has a large but mediocre military.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:01 AM on January 15, 2006


"greatly centralizing control and eliminating most forms of opposition."

Wait. You're saying that under Saddam Hussein, there was, at one time, an opposition? Me thinks the opposition was shot and gassed. Or both.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:05 AM on January 15, 2006


In any case, military action against Iran would not be of the invasion type. It would be taking out a lot of high-value targets, plus, perhaps, a blockade. I'm still betting that Syria will be taken care of first.
posted by ParisParamus at 6:15 AM on January 15, 2006


So, there may, in fact be an alliance on opposing Iran, be it military blockade, or sanctions that hurt, or military action. Maybe Iran is, even, the UN's last chance before we defund it into total irrelevancy?

I'm not that concerned with China or Russia.


it depends on how the iranians react ... i believe they can cause a great deal of trouble in that part of the world, enough that a military blockade or severe sanctions might be escalated into something else ... and a veto by russia and china would not just be a sign of the u n security council's inpotence, but a sign that there is only so much they're willing to tolerate on their continent

the russians would probably take advantage of the situation and cheat ... they did it with iraq and they're certain to do it with iran ... we can't do a total blockade or sanctions without their cooperation ... and it's likely that the iranians will turn to them if they choose not to indulge in direct confrontation

we can live with that, i guess

china's military is in no position right now to oppose us in iran ... however, they do have the ability to make us uncomfortable in other parts of asia ... and we owe them a lot of money

just as the north korean problem is something that the neighboring countries are going to have to sort out, the iranian problem is something that will eventually be decided by asians ... we can have strong opinions and even take limited action, but we are not going to have the final say on this if other powers don't want us to

the iraq war will stand as our final major attempt to be the world's policeman ... soon, regional powers will define their spheres of influence and we will have to respect that

i don't suggest we have to respect what iran wants ... we will, however, have to respect what russia and china want ... we really don't have a choice in that
posted by pyramid termite at 6:26 AM on January 15, 2006


the Euro-weasles

Straight out of the LGF phrasebook. Grow up, Paris.
posted by dash_slot- at 6:26 AM on January 15, 2006


ParisParamus writes "I'm still betting that Syria will be taken care of first."


But not, of course, by ParisParamus pulling the trigger.

Paris isn't the sort of roughneck who dirties his hands carrying a gun.

He'll be happy to wave good-bye to the real soldiers, though, and tell them where it'll be most helpful for them to make the ultimate sacrifice.
posted by orthogonality at 6:26 AM on January 15, 2006


Iran has some pretty impressive weaponary. They possess the Russian made SS-N-22 Sunburn anti shipping missile which was designed at the end of the cold war to trump the American's overwhelming naval power. Capable of mach 3 at high altitude and mach 2 at low altitude and there's not much that can stop it. Sunburn also makes a series of violent manouveres before striking its target, making it even more difficult to destroy. Hidden in the mountains surrounding the gulf Sunburn could prove a decisive weapon if thats where America chooses to park its navy. The most powerful military in the world is starting to look vunerable stuck in Iraq.
posted by piscatorius at 6:43 AM on January 15, 2006



If I had nuclear capabilities I would totally kick azz.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 6:58 AM on January 15, 2006


An attack on Iran would mostly be an air war, as the primary objective would be to damage infrastructure and set back Iran's nuclear program by a few decades. This would not be about liberation or gaining control over territory. Nobody is dumb enough to fall for that "hearts and minds" bullshit again. The infrastructure to lead such a campaign is already in place, but the US could just as easily let Israel do the work by proxy.

Any troops that would inevitably end up on the ground would be those of a special forces nature, and as luck would have it the Pentagon is increasing the size of U.S. special operations forces by almost 25 percent, augmenting an already expanded force of 51,000 Green Berets, Army Rangers, Navy SEALs and other commandos.

Someone, somewhere, is pulling a deep drag from a cigar and muttering the words "I love it when a plan comes together."
posted by furtive at 7:01 AM on January 15, 2006


It's interesting to think what Iran would do as retaliation. Obviously it would try to send something Israel's way, but would it also be willing to attack American targets in Iraq, at risk of alienating it's existing Shia support?
posted by furtive at 7:08 AM on January 15, 2006


The people of Iran don't support the mullahs, at least according to the majority of reports both in the news and from relatives living there. Why in the name of all that's sensible would you piss those people off because of something their leader says?

Can you not see the obvious comparison with the USA? So-called "liberal pacifists" would take up arms to fight an invader on US soil, even if they did not support the government. Why in god's name do you think the people or Iran wouldn't do the same? If the US does use air strikes then you will only increase popular support for the government. An invasion would be practical suicide.

I have no clue where you get your ideas from but frankly PP they seem to have very little basis in reality. Syria is no threat to Israel and neither is Iran, regardless of nuclear power. Whilst the Iranian government is happy to mouth off about pushing the jews into the sea they wouldn't dare attack because they know that thirty minutes after the first missile flew their entire nation would become a glass football pitch. Using racial and religious tension to generate support for idiocy is something that only the most backwards countries have to use. The sad fact is that both Iran and the US seem to think that it makes a great basis for policy decisions.
posted by longbaugh at 7:10 AM on January 15, 2006


"Whilst the Iranian government is happy to mouth off about pushing the jews into the sea they wouldn't dare attack because they know that thirty minutes after the first missile flew their entire nation would become a glass football pitch."

If we knew that for a fact, I would be less nervous than I am right now. But are you so sure that the leadership in Iran is not so Islamic-screwy that they care whether they are dead or alive? I hope you are right, because I would prefer that no military intervention be necessary.

As for Syria, you have a point, but there is a lot of terrorism emanating from Damascus, funded by Iran. Neutralizing Syria might send the needed message to Iran most efficiently.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:19 AM on January 15, 2006


Also, Syria is a significant threat to Israel via Hezbolah(sp?), and because of munitions being funneled into Gaza from Iran (via Hezbolah and now, Egypt). No the existential threat that Iran threatens, but enough to merit taking out Syria.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:21 AM on January 15, 2006


Eradicating the culture of terrorism means ending its governmental support everywhere. There is a clear, if indirect connection between Iran, Syria and Saudi Wahabbi'ism(sp?) and London's subway and Spain's railroad being bombed. As i've said before, conceptually, it's analogous to the NYPD clamping down on crimes, big and small to make New York City the safe place it has become over the last 15 years.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:24 AM on January 15, 2006


are you so sure that the leadership in Iran is not so Islamic-screwy that they care whether they are dead or alive?
...
Neutralizing Syria might send the needed message to Iran most efficiently.


If they don't care if they are dead or alive, why would they care what happens to Syria?
posted by Chuckles at 7:39 AM on January 15, 2006


1) Attack Muslims, who are, of course, Terrorists.

2) Attack Liberals, who are, of course, supporter of Terrorists.

3) Funnel more money to military contractors.

4) Justify more reductions in the rights of US Citizens.


5) Profit!

1. Eliminate or drastically reduce all US citizens who are capable of leading a revolution against the government;

2. Use the war on terrorism to convince the remaining citizens to allow the last of their rights to be eroded in exchange for greater security and protection against unseen evils;

3. Create or take advantage of a situation in which martial law can be enabled for all major cities; and

4. Turn the remaining population into disposable slave labor for the wealthy.


5. More Profit!
posted by nofundy at 7:44 AM on January 15, 2006


Chuckles, because I would prefer that no one die. And stop lying about my views. And fuck you.
posted by ParisParamus at 7:54 AM on January 15, 2006


I have no clue where you get your ideas from but frankly PP they seem to have very little basis in reality. Syria is no threat to Israel and neither is Iran, regardless of nuclear power. Whilst the Iranian government is happy to mouth off about pushing the jews into the sea they wouldn't dare attack because they know that thirty minutes after the first missile flew their entire nation would become a glass football pitch.

Iran already has at least one or two nuclear weapons, most likely leftovers from the Soviet era. They don't have the current means to produce new ones, nor the delivery systems to rocket them to Israel. But as you just noted, they would never do that. Why would they commit suicide that way when they can just as easily hand a nuke over to Hezbollah who can trip it at a security checkpoint? What does Israel do to respond- nuke the West Bank back?

Iran is a huge threat to Israel. Which is why their (and PP's) silly posturing about how they'll attack Iran is as precious and laughable as Iran's equally fantastic threats toward them. Iran, and Israel, and pretty much every other country, all share a very common belief in that they don't actually enjoy the idea of risking their own power and existence on the possibility of making really cool explosions. Which is why the dialogue should be an actual dialogue instead of pretending the Keyboard Kowards have any legitimacy with their "hopes it won't come to" their silly less-than-Hollywood movie fantasy.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:57 AM on January 15, 2006


Terrorism isn't a threat to anyone PP. You consistently accuse Euro-weenies like myself of being cowardly. For nearly 40 years we dealt with terrorists by infilitrating their groups, surveilling their activities, building up criminal cases and then either arresting or killing them. Don't tell me we don't know about terrorists. You've had less than 10 terrorist attacks in total. You have no fucking clue what it takes to deal with terrorists. Killing innocent civilians in Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran from thousands of miles away by remote control is a pointless exercise.

No. It's worse than that. It's a fools errand. Terrorists are not afraid of America. They know that you will try and bite if they hold out their hand. Each time you react by sending Predator drones to blow up a tent full of innocents they will laugh as you recruit more people to their cause. The people of the USA will not stand for dead or crippled soldiers coming home from a war without end hence the situation of official news blackout on flag-draped coffins and hobbling veterans. You don't have the patience for a long, drawn out battle with these people and they know it.

The terrorists involved in London are dead or captured. I don't care if it goes direct to Assad himself. It makes no difference. You follow the rule of law and you prosecute as a common criminal anyone engaged in criminal acts. We have had to deal with the IRA and ETA, Baader-Meinhoff, Black September and numerous others. We have fought longer and harder than you realise and we have won. We won without comprimising our laws and freedoms and you need to realise that this is the only victory you can have against terrorism. Someone is always going to be pissed off at you and if that someone has access to even a few basic ingredients they can create scores of casualties. You have to accept that this is not something that will end and that at best you keep society on an even keel whilst you find out who commited the acts and prosecute them.

Israel is perfectly capable of running rings around virtually any military in the middle east. They have the technological and training edge which counts for a lot, even against superior numbers. To further back them up they have nuclear weapons and the financial and, if required, military support of the USA (and Europe). You might think Islamic fundamentalists would assault Israel for no reason other than the fact that you consider them insane, I disagree.

I think that your call for a bloodbath in the middle-east is insane. I think you underestimate the power of patience and overestimate the threat of terror. I think you are a coward and I worry because a coward with a gun is a greater threat than an experienced shootist. I know it won't change your mind but sometimes I see a glimmer of sense from you and it all but makes me furious to see it wasted on pie-in-the-sky fantasies about evil men twirling their moustaches and plotting the downfall of your people.

I will make you a promise now that if Israel is attacked I will re-up and fight alongside them to repel the invaders which, unfortunately for one so bloodthirsty, is likely more than you would do.
posted by longbaugh at 7:58 AM on January 15, 2006


I would gladly help the IDF in any way I could.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:13 AM on January 15, 2006


What about the rest of what I just said? Anything to add?
posted by longbaugh at 8:20 AM on January 15, 2006


I hope you are right about "You might think Islamic fundamentalists would assault Israel for no reason other than the fact that you consider them insane, I disagree." However, I think it would be folly to not take Iranian Holocaust denying seriously. Quite a number of Israelis have been murdered by Iranian-backed terrorists.

I am tired of the abuse and mischaracterizations being stated about me here. I'm taking a rest.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:24 AM on January 15, 2006


"You consistently accuse Euro-weenies like myself of being cowardly."

No, I accuse the French and Germans of being weasles; of opposing the Iraq war because they stood to lose financially due to their massive relationship with Saddam and Oil-For-Food, and supporting Saddam in a number of other ways. There are plenty of decent people in France and Germany, and they should not be offended by my talk; they likely embrace it.

Now I am out of here.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:29 AM on January 15, 2006


I guess he's on his way to Tel Aviv to enlist.
posted by alumshubby at 8:46 AM on January 15, 2006


"I accuse the French and Germans of being weasles..."

Or weasels, even. That's okay, PP. Nobody ever accused you of being an inteluctial intulluctial interlektual smart.

And gee, here I thought that France and Germany opposed going to war in Iraq because they favored the successful continuation of the disarmament efforts. You know... the ones which were working so well! Or perhaps it was because they were troubled by what even the UN head called an illegal, unauthorized war... or by the US' craven attempts to bully and rush into it. Maybe they realized that it was likely to kill over 100,000 Iraqi civilians, and cause huge refugee problems in neighboring countries.

Or maybe they just liked hearing themselves speak. Certainly, people like de Villepan must've liked the applause and approval which he so uncharacteristically received from the great majority of the members of the UN. The guy in charge had to bang his gavel and remind the audience that it wasn't proper, under the circumstances.

France and Germany's opposition to going to war was not only suppported by a majority of members of the UN, it was also supported by a great many on the UN security council too -- enough members to stop US aspirations of getting approval for their illegal war. Bush promised an up-or-down vote at the UN one week, only to reneg on that promise the very next week, because he didn't want to be seen as a loser, acting against the wishes of the UN Security Council.

BTW, did you see the list of companies that did business with Iraq, btw? Lots of familiar American names... and hey, wasn't it Rumsfeld himself shaking hands with Saddam while Saddam gassed the Iranians by the thousands, using US chemical precursors to do the deed, and US intelligence to target the attacks? Why yes, I believe it was.
posted by insomnia_lj at 9:00 AM on January 15, 2006


XQUZYPHYR: Iran already has at least one or two nuclear weapons, most likely leftovers from the Soviet era.

Not that this would be too surprising, but do you have any documentary evidence I could look into?
posted by Chuckles at 9:13 AM on January 15, 2006


On preview thank you kaibutsu. So far its probably all noise. If Iran was attacked they would quite likely close the Straits of Hormuz. Oil at $100 a barrel would then be cheap. Here is a link on the Iranian armed forces.
posted by adamvasco at 9:19 AM on January 15, 2006


Okay, I changed my mind. It seems very unlikely that the Soviets ever gave Iran nuclear capability... Gorbachev gave Khomeini nukes? That would be surprising!

What I meant was, it wouldn't be too surprising if Iran has managed to make/acquire a nuke or two.
posted by Chuckles at 9:22 AM on January 15, 2006


i think we have to be realistic about what we can do ... and i think that bush's experience with iraq may have taught him something about the difficulty of enforcing our will halfway across the world

what delusional world you live in? have you seen him lately? your president is was/is not actually sleeping, so there's no need try to wake him up. as a chinese idiom have it. you can wake those who pretend to be asleep.
posted by sundaymag at 10:09 AM on January 15, 2006


sorry i meant to say you can't
posted by sundaymag at 10:10 AM on January 15, 2006


I think the "spring training" for Iran will be Syria. As you know, I believe there's a treasure trove of WMDs and dirt on Iran in Syria. The country is relatively small, and with Israel to the south, and Lebanon where it is politically, taking out Assad will be fairly easy. Fairly....
posted by ParisParamus

PP, how many times have you been 180 degrees from the truth wrong in the past with these? Seriously, go read your old posts for yourself. Then ask yourself: Am I more or less accurate than a magic eightball?

Because if an inanimate object without even the means to access Little Green Footballs is consistently more accurate than you are about the likely outcome of future events, you might want to re-evaluate how you are forming these opinions.

Just a suggestion.
posted by iron chef morimoto at 10:11 AM on January 15, 2006


ParisParamus: "No, I accuse the French and Germans of being weasles; of opposing the Iraq war because they stood to lose financially due to their massive relationship with Saddam and Oil-For-Food, and supporting Saddam in a number of other ways. There are plenty of decent people in France and Germany, and they should not be offended by my talk; they likely embrace it."

I take exception to your remarks and the accusation of whole nations as "weasles"(sic) and craven capitalistic supporters of inhumane regimes. You, sir, are a coward, a liar, and a fool for not being able to have a single original thought or even attempting to understand your own sad situation, not to speak of your insufficient grasp of the feelings of foreign nations, which you have proven not to be able to understand several times. I wish to hear nothing more of you and hope in your own interest that you will someday reach the maturity and acquire the knowledge necessary for a civilized discussion.
posted by PontifexPrimus at 10:20 AM on January 15, 2006


For what its worth, Fallows article in last year's Atlantic . Probably discussed here before, but worth putting up. Much nonsense dispelled in a sobering assessment of what a conflict with Iran might look like.
posted by bumpkin at 10:23 AM on January 15, 2006


I would gladly help the IDF in any way I could.

Kudos ParisParamus, you've evolved beyond your usual trite statements into statements of sheer stupidity.
posted by furtive at 10:47 AM on January 15, 2006


"PP, how many times have you been 180 degrees from the truth wrong in the past with these? Seriously, go read your old posts for yourself. Then ask yourself: Am I more or less accurate than a magic eightball?"

My predictions have been pretty good. I predicted the Iraq War would happen; predicted that Amazon would either fold, or cease being, primarily, a bookseller; predicted that the AOL-TW merger would be a disaster; that Apple stock was a good buy at $28; that President Bush would win a second term; and that Metafilter would continue to be populated by people with a below-average ability to distinguish seriousness with humor. I will also testify under oath that I have never owned a Magic 8 Ball.
posted by ParisParamus at 10:53 AM on January 15, 2006


Oh, back already from enlisting in the IDF?
posted by alumshubby at 10:56 AM on January 15, 2006


Want a Predator to blow up your house? Invite someone to dinner ...




January 15,2006 | PESHAWAR, Pakistan -- Al-Qaida's No. 2 leader was invited to dinner at one of the houses struck by a purported CIA airstrike on a Pakistani border village, but he did not show up, a newspaper and intelligence officials said Sunday.

http://www.salon.com/wire/ap/archive.html?wire=D8F56K9O0.html
posted by hank at 10:59 AM on January 15, 2006


Each time you react by sending Predator drones to blow up a tent full of innocents they will laugh as you recruit more people to their cause

Exactly.

And PP, go out and try to find some shame. You've already ragged on somebody who actually had the courage to serve his country--politely STFU and keep your neocon fantasies to yourself. You don't have "ideas," you have pre-approved talking points based on the political equivalent of slash fiction.
posted by bardic at 11:06 AM on January 15, 2006


(hank beat me to it)
posted by bardic at 11:06 AM on January 15, 2006


You know, what really bothers me about PP's comments in this and many other, topically related, threads, is not his personal ignorance or bluster. It's that he's typical of millions of Americans--I have heard the same ignorant, jingoistic bullshit come out of the mouths of more otherwise smart and respectable people than I care to think of. That's what really upsets me about what he says--and continues to say, in spite of all...um...facts that contradict his opinions.

PP: I predicted the Iraq War would happen..., and yet, waaay up thread, when delmoi said he was completely unsurprised by the non-discovery of WMD you said: Well, delmoi, you were the only one....

So I guess your powers of prognostication are limited, then, but not your powers to ignore actual facts: many, many, many voices claimed we would find no weapons in Iraq. To not acknowledge that people said that is to proclaim your complete and total ignorance once again.

I even bet one of my co-workers there would be no weapons--he's a rightie, and was gung-ho about the war (he's completely changed his mind, btw--he's a born-again christian, dyed-in-the-wool Fox-news-watching republican, who no longer trusts this administration at all). I told him that if any weapons were found, I would come into his office and eat my shoe. One piece at a time, no matter how long it took. I was serious. Becuase I knew there were no fucking weapons, just like anybody else who bothered to listen.

Lordy, man. Shut the fuck up. And I don't really mean that personally--you can continue to bluster away, and I'll continue to ignore your comments on these subjects. But, on behalf of the millions of Americans whom you represent, I have to say again: shut the fuck up.
posted by LooseFilter at 11:10 AM on January 15, 2006


(And I apologize to everyone else for joining the chorus, but Paris does actually show evidence otherwise of being a rational, educated human being, that I'm baffled by the conceptual block on these issues. How does jingoistic bluster get so deeply programmed, that no amount of actual information will penetrate it??)
posted by LooseFilter at 11:12 AM on January 15, 2006


PP: Chuckles, because I would prefer that no one die. And stop lying about my views. And fuck you.
PP: I am tired of the abuse...

Meh, speaks for itself. So sorry about your credibility.
posted by moonbird at 11:20 AM on January 15, 2006


Iran will be invaded by conventional U.S. forces only if the mullahs get caught red-handed, backing a major attack on the U.S. or Israel as clearly as the Taliban backed the 9/11 plotters. I for one don't think the mullahs are anywhere stupid enough to do that.
posted by MattD at 11:21 AM on January 15, 2006


Hey Paris? How does one fit BOTH feet into one's mouth?

Just askin'...
posted by illiad at 11:34 AM on January 15, 2006


You know, what really bothers me about PP's comments [is] ... that he's typical of millions of Americans--I have heard the same ignorant, jingoistic bullshit come out of the mouths of more otherwise smart and respectable people than I care to think of.

posted by LooseFilter at 11:10 AM PST on January

Well, that speaks to a larger issue that I think is really destructive for the functioning of this country as a free society.

No matter what the issue is, the "news" media, as well as people in general, seem to be far too willing to say, "I wonder what Bill O'Rieilly , Sean Hannity, Newt Gingrich, Michele Malkin, Laura Ingram, Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, The Corner, LGF, Rev. Dobson, Jerry Fallwell, Focus on The Family et al thinks about this"?

PP, along with others of his ilk like Malkin, Wolfowitz, Perle, Pipes and the whole Hee Haw gang have shown themselves to be morally and intellectually challenged, if not entirely bankrupt, and have essentially given up their right to be take seriously.

They can say whatever they please, just like the lunatic down on the corner with anti-fluoridation signs, but it doesn't mean they should be granted any bigger of a pulpit than a street corner, nor any more credence.

If you want to have an intelligent discussion with someone, and they say something along the lines of, "Well, Sean Hannity said the other day ... ", stop the conversation right there.

You have to be _this_ intellectually tall to go on this ride.

If not, then too bad.
posted by Relay at 11:39 AM on January 15, 2006


ParisParamus: I'm still wondering just how you can characterize the invasion of Iraq as self-defense. How do you keep a straight face, spouting garbage like that?
posted by Malor at 11:45 AM on January 15, 2006


PP, along with others of his ilk like Malkin, Wolfowitz, Perle, Pipes and the whole Hee Haw gang have shown themselves to be morally and intellectually challenged, if not entirely bankrupt [...]

Honestly, I don't think Wolfowitz et. al. are intellectually challenged. Quite the contrary, I think they're fiercely intelligent people. The problem here is that as you say they're morally bankrupt. They have a vision of the way the world should be and they have no problem hurting (or killing) others along the way to fulfilling that vision.

Of course, the greatest issue is that their vision tends to be black-and-white with very clear borders. If you sit outside those borders, you will be viewed as either undesireable (and therefore cheaply expendable) or inferior (and therefore should be put in what the feel is your place). Ultra-conservative thinking is all about reviving the autocratic state, with the Ultra-Cons being the autocrats of course.

Because, you know, moderates and leftists just don't know what's good for them.
posted by illiad at 11:50 AM on January 15, 2006


Definitely self-defense for a nuclear, bio- chem-weapons age. Because once they've gone off, it's too late. If you rattle sabers with the demostrated posession of such weapons, you're fair game--END OF STORY.
posted by ParisParamus at 11:50 AM on January 15, 2006




If you rattle sabers with the demostrated posession of such weapons, you're fair game--END OF STORY.

Um. We're rattling sabers, and we have those weapons--far more of them than Iran, certainly. Is the United States fair game?
posted by EarBucket at 12:01 PM on January 15, 2006


Quite the contrary, I think they're fiercely intelligent people.

I used to think this of the neocons, but you know, stupid is as stupid does, and that group has not shown to be more shrewd or calculating than the average DC politico--in fact, if you read through the PNAC website, it's some pretty half-baked bullshit, IMO.

I don't think they're smarter than everyone else (though they obviously think that they are)--I just think they're more ruthless and morally bankrupt. THAT is what's caught any opposition continually off guard--when you go into a knife fight with only a knife, the asshole who brings a gun will win. And I think that most with any political power who would oppose them still have not acknowledged how dirty they* really are, and how stupid** they really are.

*By "they" I refer, specifically, to the prime movers of the neoconservative movement, most of whom are signatories on the various proclamations found on the PNAC website.

**I think there is a hefty amount of intellectual ability among them, but that's what makes them stupid--they're real smart, but just smart enough to let hubris fatally cloud their judgment. I'm a really smart guy, too, and I've convinced myself of some (in hindsight) pretty stupid shit in my life so far. Thank goodness I have close friends and family who will tell me like it is when the need arises.
posted by LooseFilter at 12:12 PM on January 15, 2006


Of course, the greatest issue is that their vision tends to be black-and-white with very clear borders.

I agree--that's it in a nutshell.
posted by LooseFilter at 12:15 PM on January 15, 2006


And don't forget LooseFilter, that many of these same neo-cons (Perle, Pipes, Wolfowitz) were the same guys in late 80s screaming that the US has to build up its nuclear arsenal RIGHT NOW, because the Soviets are a grave and growing threat, and we're loosing our "window of opportunity" to combat them before they have the upper hand.

And then within a matter of months of their position paper coming out, the Soviet Union collapsed.

It's not whether you got a a brain or not, it's how you use it.
posted by Relay at 12:22 PM on January 15, 2006


If you rattle sabers with the demostrated posession of such weapons, you're fair game--END OF STORY.

not if you can back it up ... iraq couldn't back it up ... north korea can ... and i strongly suspect iran can, too

this is the one effect of the iraq war that no one counted on ... yes, pissant little countries like libya are going to back off, because they know they can't deal with us

but countries that can hold us off, or make an invasion very costly are rushing to get their wmds so they can be sure of deterring us

north korea has already won that fight ... and unless we can persuade them to drop it, iran has a good chance to win theirs too

i think bombing their sites will only delay it
posted by pyramid termite at 12:25 PM on January 15, 2006


Relay: what is this "history" to which you refer? Are we supposed to "learn" from it?

It's not whether you got a a brain or not, it's how you use it.

Word. That sums up America 2006 better than any slogan I've seen.
posted by LooseFilter at 12:40 PM on January 15, 2006


I hereby dedicate this thread in the name of Oliver Stone.
posted by Sparx at 12:42 PM on January 15, 2006


Are we fair game? No, because we are morally superior to wacky Islamofascists. Or just plain fascists, like in Syria (although Syria hasn't saber-rattled like Iran, and how Iraq did with Sddam).

And if you can't accept that, there's no hope for you.
posted by ParisParamus at 12:46 PM on January 15, 2006


Why can't you get it through your head that a dead person is a dead person, regardless of the motivations of those who killed the person?

Osama bin Laden is convinced that his position is morally superior too. He just wants to build an ode to heaven on earth. That doesn't matter to any of his victims.

All those dead Iraqis and Afghanistanis don't care whether you're morally fucking superior or not. Their parents, children, siblings are dead! From American bombs! What the fuck, ParisParamus?
posted by Firas at 12:50 PM on January 15, 2006


No, no, wait. Yes, a dead person is a dead person. I'm not suggesting otherwise. What I am suggesting is that all other things being equal, we--the US--has the right to defend itself from perceived threats, and that as a democratic society, we are much less likely to go to war, or strike our and do terrorism, than Iran is, and Iran is not to be trusted. I don't trust the Suicide Bomber Sponsor Society, which is what Iran is. Of course, lots of idiots here will claim that Iraq is/was just "American terorrism," and that makes us all the same, to which I respond: kindly go to Hell.
posted by ParisParamus at 12:58 PM on January 15, 2006


Thus Saith The Bottomless Well of Need.
posted by y2karl at 1:02 PM on January 15, 2006


No, no, wait. Yes, a dead person is a dead person. I'm not suggesting otherwise. What I am suggesting is that all other things being equal, we--the US--has the right to defend itself from perceived threats, and that as a democratic society, we are much less likely to go to war, or strike our and do terrorism, than Iran is, and Iran is not to be trusted. I don't trust the Suicide Bomber Sponsor Society, which is what Iran is. Does that mean that completely innocent Iranians are imperilled by US foreign policy? Unfortunately yes. But the US is entitled to view American deaths (the potential for) as more important than Iranian deaths. Of course, lots of idiots here will claim that Iraq is/was just American terrorism, which puts us on the same level as Iranian terrorism--if you believe that, please say so, so that I can completely ignore you.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:03 PM on January 15, 2006


Yeah, yeah, the US is not morally superior to Iran? Fuck you very much.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:05 PM on January 15, 2006


Wow, you're setting a great example to us all of fine upstanding conservative values, PP. Whatta gentleman!

Really, this is the least civil thread we're had in some time.
posted by moonbird at 1:10 PM on January 15, 2006


Oh, and if this is causing you so much anger, enough to cuss out total strangers, why don't you just stop and take a bubblebath or something? Why do you keep bothering?
posted by moonbird at 1:11 PM on January 15, 2006


'Moral superiority' is not an innate characteristic that's ascribed regardless of action (nevermind that it has precious little to do with international relations).

Look, you and I are both liberals in the classical sense. We both think representative democracy, civil liberty etc. are better than autocracy, theocracy, false imprisonment, etc.

That doesn't mean that someone killed in the name of freedom is any less a victim than someone killed in the name of religion.

I don't mean that hands should be tied by default, it just means that there is a burden, a burden of guilt and shame that comes with slaughter. With nuking Hiroshima or Nagasaki. With firebombing Dresden. With indiscriminately blowing up Pakistani houses. You can't shrug innocent blood off, you can't decide that it doesn't matter. You don't go to war just because you feel like it, because the balance has has to incorporate the people you're murdering.

The security of the USA is not all that's at stake on the planet.
posted by Firas at 1:14 PM on January 15, 2006


moonbird, the implication of so many here is that the US is no better than any of the countries is considers its enemies, be it the Soviet Union in the past, or Iraq with Saddam, or Iran, etc. Similarly, there is the implication that these regimes aren't dangerous to their region and to our interests and security. That is just an absurd, untenable position. The Chomsky Camp needs to be identified and ignored. And, perhaps, cursed at a bit.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:16 PM on January 15, 2006


and that as a democratic society, we are much less likely to go to war, or strike our and do terrorism, than Iran is, and Iran is not to be trusted.

How many countries has Iran invaded lately?
posted by EarBucket at 1:16 PM on January 15, 2006


Guys, it's ok because we're better than than those filthy foreigners. Didn't you get the memo?
posted by puke & cry at 1:17 PM on January 15, 2006 [1 favorite]


The US has the right to defend its interests and give them priority.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:20 PM on January 15, 2006


If you nuke New York harbor, there's no need to invade the US.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:21 PM on January 15, 2006


ParisParamus writes "moonbird, the implication of so many here is that the US is no better than any of the countries is considers its enemies, be it the Soviet Union in the past, or Iraq with Saddam, or Iran, etc. "


Well, precisely PP.

I abhorred the SovUnion (and Saddam's Iraq, and Iran) for being police states without habeas corpus, which practiced indefinite detention and torture in secret prisons and gulags.

But now that we -- the US of A -- are doing all these thing too, I'm supposed to cheer for them?

Sorry, I have a moral compass, not a moral whether vane.
posted by orthogonality at 1:21 PM on January 15, 2006


"weather". urgh.
posted by orthogonality at 1:23 PM on January 15, 2006


Evan Bayhligerent.

Lieberman in jackboots.
posted by insomnia_lj at 1:24 PM on January 15, 2006


The US has the right to defend its interests and give them priority.

Of course! Just like any other nation-state. I'm glad you feel that way. Iran, for example, has the right to develop nuclear power, or develop nuclear weapons to deter enemy aggression, right?

Oh, wait. Is that a double-standard I hear coming down the rails? ;-)
posted by illiad at 1:25 PM on January 15, 2006


Hey, PP, firas just made an outstanding point. Why don't you respond to that?
posted by LooseFilter at 1:27 PM on January 15, 2006


If you nuke New York harbor, there's no need to invade the US.

When did that happen? I missed that.

The point is that it's morally wrong to attack a country that's not a threat to you. Holocaust denial isn't a casus belli. You swallowed the President's malarkey about Iraq hook, line, and sinker, and you can't even admit that there weren't any WMDs after George W. Bush himself has said that there weren't any. And now you're jumping onboard the new rhetoric that says Iran's a pressing threat that needs to be bombed.

Honestly. If the President went on TV and said we needed to bomb Vancouver, you'd argue with your dying breath that it's vital to our national security to wipe out those evil Canadians.

I expect this kind of nonsensical thinking from the religious right--they've managed to conflate Jesus, America, the Republican Party, and George Bush into the same thing in their minds, whether they realize it or not, so of course they can't think of Bush as anything less than infallible. If you're not one of the theocrats, your insistence on taking every word the man says as gospel is even more mystifying.
posted by EarBucket at 1:32 PM on January 15, 2006


Loosefilter, who is suggesting that the security of the US is all that matters? If you interpret anything I've said as such then you are mistaken.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:37 PM on January 15, 2006


If you're not one of the theocrats, your insistence on taking every word the man says as gospel is even more mystifying.

Although I'm not ready to accuse Paris of this, I've noticed that a lot of Bush supporters really like the fact that he's less-than-brilliant and decidedly anti-intellectual. I guess it makes them feel good that "a good ol' boy who ain't into all that high-falutin' science and logic crap" can be President.
posted by illiad at 1:38 PM on January 15, 2006


"You swallowed the President's malarkey about Iraq hook, line, and sinker"

No, if it was malarky, it was the malarky of all the intelligence agencies of the world, include those of the countries that opposed going to war.

And no, I am not a Bushy. And no, Vancouver is not Teheran. Stop equating everything with everything else.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:40 PM on January 15, 2006


"your insistence on taking every word the man says as gospel is even more mystifying."

I'm sorry, but you have me confused with someone else. I am not your Republican or Neocon Pinata.

And now I really need to get some work done. Bye all.
posted by ParisParamus at 1:43 PM on January 15, 2006


PP:The Chomsky Camp needs to be identified and ignored

Then why don't you start ignoring them (us) and find more productive ways to state your case than to engage in puerile name calling? Do you really think this will help matters at all?

FWIW, if we or our agents attack Iran, we've set about a chain reaction in the M'East that will likely wage on in perpetuity. It's already beginning. Should our forces take on yet another front (even without invasion but with air-strikes, blockades, etc), than we pose the greatest sitting duck risk to our own shores that we've ever seen... A US so bogged down in foreign theatres that it is severely hampered in responding to immediate threats within our borders. Should we take on Iran or Syria seriously, we will be more of a target for attacks against us, as we're engaged in police actions in two essentially Islamic states, maybe more. That spells provocation, and frankly, I'd rather see our sovereignty assured by protecting what we have here from *legitimate* threats than to go all nutters on states whose threat levels are entirely theoretical, especially in the wake of so many massive intelligence failures on our part.
posted by moonbird at 1:44 PM on January 15, 2006


And no, I am not a Bushy.

Would you care to provide an example of something President Bush could do that would go too far, then? Something worse than imprisoning American citizens indefinitely without charge or trial? Worse than torture? Worse than starting a war under false pretenses? Worse than running up a trillion dollars in debt in five years? Worse than cutting Medicare and school lunch programs to pay for $100 billion in tax cuts for millionaires a month before the government is due to run out of money? Seriously. What does the guy have to do for you to criticize him?
posted by EarBucket at 1:44 PM on January 15, 2006


And no, I am not a Bushy. -posted by ParisParamus
"Bush is truly the best President I have observed" - ParisParamus

(et.al too numerous to post)


No, if it was malarky, it was the malarky of all the intelligence agencies of the world, include those of the countries that opposed going to war. - posted by ParisParamus


So every intelligence agency in all participating countries in the world were wrong - but Bush was right?

Not only is your logic flawed. You are factually incorrect. And - to again quote you - I'm too tired/sleepy/lazy/my pussy hurts/whatver vapid statement I cam make to mitigate the comment I just made and avoid any intrusion of reality on my perspective/ inserted here - to post the myriad supporting links (although perhaps the Op-Ed page of the WSJ has something that refers to something someone else said vaguely related)

-------

I just came back to post this: In a clear parallel with Jewish and Christian visions of Armageddon, Shias believe the imam zaman will return at a time of great turmoil to defeat the forces of evil;

Israel is a nuclear power. They have delivery systems, cruise missles, nuclear warheads, yadda yadda - probably 5 or 6 most powerful nuclear nation in the world. They could turn Iran into a glass parking lot if they were an actual threat. We wouldn't have to lift a finger.

So there is clearly a disparity between the strategic reality - that is protecting ourselves - and the ideological one.

Ideology is not a good reason to go to war.

Added to that - whatever position we're in, we've got our own apocalyptic nuts here. Ideology pales in the face of armageddon.

But - got to go - Bears game on. Watching.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:06 PM on January 15, 2006


Stop responding to paris people. seriously, he is determining the scope of the debate. it's much easier to bash paris, than to have an alternative to war mongering. what are the alternatives to a war with Iran:

ONE: complete disarmament of the middle east. US should cut ALL funds to Israel, if they do not present a plan for gradual nuclear disarmament.

TWO: Cut funds to Israel unless they show their plans for unconditional dismantling of the west bank occupation and Jerusalem. Just like alll other hot-spots, the Security Council should provide peace keeping forces for the time being.

THREE: establishment of a secular Palestinian democracy with the help of UN and the rest of the world. Disarmament t of all Palestinian resistance weapons and a legitimate political competition rather than arm struggle, suicide bombing and mortars into the Israeli territory. Any political group that advocates an end to a Jewish state should only be allowed to advocate for this position in an alliance with those forces inside israel who are seeking an end to a Jewish state. this has to be a binational effort for a unification of Palestine and Israel and a One State Solution.


Don't be surprised that None of these involves Iran. The best respond to Iran is pressure and support for the democratic forces inside the country to reform the Islamic Republic. Whether we like it or not, Islamic republic is the closest thing to democracy in the Islamic world (next to turkey where democracy is guaranteed by the direct influence of the military). That's NATO installed democracy in Afghanistan end up becoming, and that's what we hope Iraq to become. Iranian system is all that west has for bringing democracy to the Arab Muslim world. USA has copied so much from the Iranian constitution for both Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Iran can play a major role in bringing democracy to the rest of the Muslim world. by involving Iran the west then can transfer a lot of the cost of this to Iran as well. The oil resources of the middle east can be used to remedy the Palestinian refugee issue and a lot more. For this ti happen, the west needs to let Iran and other oil rich countries like Saudi Arabia and Iraq to play a major role in the mid east crisis.

a final settlement in the middle east can finally bring cheap energy to Israel and open up the Arab world market to Israeli products and services.
posted by sundaymag at 2:32 PM on January 15, 2006


US should cut ALL funds to Israel [...]

Would this ever be a realistic option given how powerful the Jewish voting bloc is in the U.S.?
posted by illiad at 2:46 PM on January 15, 2006


FOUR: Become energy independent and then forget about all these other countries.
posted by alumshubby at 3:23 PM on January 15, 2006


FOUR: Become energy independent and then forget about all these other countries.

Hmm. Would not being interested in exploiting the middle east make the US more of a hegemon or less? And would this be a bad thing or a good thing for the world?

What I mean is, once the USSR was no longer a threat, the USA figured it made sense to stop playing in 'international treaty' type games and start going it alone with ad-hoc coalitions. Without the support of the USA, things like Kyoto and the ICC become mostly meaningless, so other regions are hurt because the USA turned unilateralist. Turning completely energy independent would make the USA even more unilateralist—eg. no more interest in securing a Palestinian state, etc.

Frankly I'd much rather have a world order with the USA as a hegemon (like it is today) than another country. But maybe I'm just indoctrinated :)
posted by Firas at 4:14 PM on January 15, 2006


Firas, I leave, and you start making sense.
posted by ParisParamus at 4:44 PM on January 15, 2006


Turning completely energy independent would make the USA even more unilateralist

Except that they owe all their money to the Chinese, who probably won't take well to being ignored.

Frankly I'd much rather have a world order with the USA as a hegemon (like it is today) than another country.

Let Europe have a crack at it -- with the mid-east as neighbours it has a far higher stake in such events. And its politics aren't hidebound by corruption and religion.
posted by bonaldi at 5:12 PM on January 15, 2006


Let Europe have a crack at it -- with the mid-east as neighbours it has a far higher stake in such events. And its politics aren't hidebound by corruption and religion.

What?????!

http://www.ex.ac.uk/~RDavies/arian/scandals/political.html#euro



Frankly I'd much rather have a world order with the USA as a hegemon (like it is today) than another country. But maybe I'm just indoctrinated :)

"I'll forgive and forget if you say you'll never go. 'Cos it's true what they say: It's better the devil you know."

- K. Minogue
posted by uncanny hengeman at 6:02 PM on January 15, 2006


"'Cos it's true what they say: It's better the devil you know."


Next up: the Euro DevilFor Food Scandale.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:11 PM on January 15, 2006


Interesting Book The US is good for the world.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:30 PM on January 15, 2006


Would this ever be a realistic option given how powerful the Jewish voting bloc is in the U.S.? -illiad

What you're saying indirectly blames the Jews for the endless conflict in the Middle East. USA cannot fix the middle east problem because to be fair, it will have to go against the Jewish interest. and because USA is bullied into unfair brokering of the middle east conflict by Jews, we are going to have perpetual violence in that part of the world. This is false logic.

USA is not Pro Israel because of the power of the Jewish community or the voting block. Those are real but non binding reasons. USA is pro Israel for it's own evil purpose; to pit Jewish nationalism against Islamic nationalism and to exploit both sides and get them to destroy each other in the process. of course USA is willing to reward the winner in that fight. (the reason why israel and not the Arabs gets the better end of the deal)

USA has the might and power to stop all payments to Israel in a drastic policy shift, usually after a major act. For example, USA could have used 9/11 to do that, but it chose to use it for a complete opposite policy shift. And we know what that shift was :)
posted by sundaymag at 8:40 PM on January 15, 2006


Because Israel is no better than Syria or Iran, so lets treat them all the same! you what, I have an even better idea. Lets take all the aid we giive to Israel, and give it to the Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas.
posted by ParisParamus at 8:53 PM on January 15, 2006


USA is pro Israel for it's own evil purpose; to pit Jewish nationalism against Islamic nationalism and to exploit both sides and get them to destroy each other in the process.

A perversely interesting theory. What do you figure the reason might be for a desire to have both sides destroy each other?

And if that is in fact the goal, wouldn't it be more effective to support both or neither sides?

And one more question: when you look at the night sky, do you get homesick?
posted by stirfry at 9:32 PM on January 15, 2006


To use the resources of the middle east: OIL that's the first reason. this policy was developed by British Government late 1800, and passed on fully to USA after the world war 2. as they realized that Arabia had this resource, the Immigration to Palestine became the favorite part of the national question for Jewish people by early Zionists. Those guys were considering a wide variety of locations among them the holy land, but it was the colonial policies of Britain against the prevention of the rise of another Khaliphacy (united states of Arabia) around the oil money that was about to hit the jackpots.

a true alliance between Israel and Arabs is also another big fear of USA strategic plans, so at the same time that they promote "peace" between Israel and Arab states, they make sure the two sides don't get too cozy.
posted by sundaymag at 9:45 PM on January 15, 2006


I have an open secular democracy strapped to my ankle everywhere I go. Just in case I run into Terrorists.

So far no terrorists. Other than the French, of course.
posted by The Monkey at 9:49 PM on January 15, 2006


What the world wants is a reliable and stable supply of oil. This is an advantage to the producing and consuming countries both. A stable, peaceful Mideast would be a very good thing for all concerned.
posted by stirfry at 9:52 PM on January 15, 2006


Seymour Hersh, Pulitzer Prize winner, prognosticates, pontificates, at Princeton.
posted by hortense at 9:53 PM on January 15, 2006


What the world wants is a reliable and stable supply of oil. This is an advantage to the producing and consuming countries both. A stable, peaceful Mideast would be a very good thing for all concerned.

sweet dreams are made of these

because the world runs on currencies and their exchange. Oil is what money is printed against since Nixon dropped the gold standard (these days money is printed based on Chinese cheap productivity surplus as well). This double nature of oil (both as enegry and as the currency reserve) has made it a pawn in the game of international central bankers and various governments. If USA is going to benefit from the production, distribution and consumption of BOTH a) oil and b) American dollars, OIL needs to be paid out in DOLLAR.

One of the important factors really has kept the American economy going is the recycling of oil money. it's simple the Feds print baseless US dollars and give it as payments to saudis and other oil producing countries, then based on the international value of this fake piece of paper the oil producing nations get to spend it. well most of the oil income stays in USA in terms of bonds or investment. This is the other side of recycling dollars with china. america cannot afford to pay for oil in euro.
posted by sundaymag at 10:35 PM on January 15, 2006


I am sorry PP is having trouble with the ladies/haemorrhoids/his medication/whatever. I am also mostly sorry that he has managed to derail yet another thread into being about him. Having said that, it is quite amusing in a sad way.

PP is the anti-yoda.

Otherwise, some interesting posts.
posted by asok at 4:11 AM on January 16, 2006


Luke, the warm water!
posted by ParisParamus at 4:42 AM on January 16, 2006


The whole thought of yet another worse than useless war makes me feel sick. And more and more, I realize that if we do nothing more to stop it than post messages on the Internet, we are responsible for it.
posted by orange swan at 7:13 AM on January 16, 2006


“The best respond to Iran is pressure and support for the democratic forces inside the country to reform the Islamic Republic.”
- posted by sundaymag

Some cogent argument(s) sundaymag. I suspect the problem with this admin is - as they have demonstrated - no patience. For 20 years out this would be a great plan.
And it shifts the burden of responsibility for the world to us. I’d rather share that. Albeit, with us having the upper hand, as Firas said, but sharing it.


“I realize that if we do nothing more to stop it than post messages on the Internet,”
- posted by orange swan

Who’s “we” kemosabe? No one’s stopping you. And you are the only one you have any control over. The world is what you make it and the bit of it you control is under your heels. Who cares what anyone else is doing?

(other than what’s-his-name)

We go down this road tho - that is start kicking over Iran’s teawagon - we will have a war with China within 15 years give or take 10. A big one.
posted by Smedleyman at 7:34 AM on January 16, 2006


Well, I'm moving out of the country in April. Have fun you guys.
posted by iamck at 12:57 PM PST on January 14 [!]


Oh! Can I come too...PLEASE?!
posted by SwingingJohnson1968 at 8:01 AM on January 16, 2006


Possibile military action against Iran is being framed entirely in terms of nuclear proliferation, but in March the Iranians will establish a bourse in which oil prices will be denominated in Euros. Grist to the mills of those who think that US intervention in the middle east is all about defending the petrodollar.
posted by apodo at 8:46 AM on January 16, 2006


Who’s “we” kemosabe? No one’s stopping you. And you are the only one you have any control over. The world is what you make it and the bit of it you control is under your heels. Who cares what anyone else is doing?

If I truly didn't and/or shouldn't care what anyone else is doing, I wouldn't/shouldn't be worried about these wars, would I?
posted by orange swan at 10:04 AM on January 16, 2006


Fair enough, orange swan. Not what I meant tho.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:30 PM on January 16, 2006


Aces. Here.
posted by Smedleyman at 8:05 PM on January 16, 2006




Thanks for the link homunculus, it was an interesting read, but that Niall Ferguson is batshitinsane...

Anyway, here is some Indian perspective on the issue - India, Iran, and the Nuclear Challenge.
India's vote against Iran last year, for example, led the U.S. to try and impose new conditions that ran counter to the letter and spirit of the July 18 nuclear agreement. Among these were the demand that India accept in-perpetuity safeguards and give up its claims — as recognised in that agreement — to exactly the same rights and obligations in the nuclear field as the U.S. With the negotiations on civilian-military nuclear separation keenly poised, the Manmohan Singh Government should resist the temptation to blink for the second time.
posted by Chuckles at 1:47 PM on January 18, 2006


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