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stlrtruck
09-15-2009, 08:58 AM
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203917304574410672271269390.html

Obama Is Pushing Israel Toward War President Obama can't outsource matters of war and peace to another state.By BRET STEPHENS

Events are fast pushing Israel toward a pre-emptive military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities, probably by next spring. That strike could well fail. Or it could succeed at the price of oil at $300 a barrel, a Middle East war, and American servicemen caught in between. So why is the Obama administration doing everything it can to speed the war process along?

At July's G-8 summit in Italy, Iran was given a September deadline to start negotiations over its nuclear programs. Last week, Iran gave its answer: No.

Instead, what Tehran offered was a five-page document that was the diplomatic equivalent of a giant kiss-off. It begins by lamenting the "ungodly ways of thinking prevailing in global relations" and proceeds to offer comprehensive talks on a variety of subjects: democracy, human rights, disarmament, terrorism, "respect for the rights of nations," and other areas where Iran is a paragon. Conspicuously absent from the document is any mention of Iran's nuclear program, now at the so-called breakout point, which both Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his boss Ali Khamenei insist is not up for discussion.

What's an American president to do in the face of this nonstarter of a document? What else, but pretend it isn't a nonstarter. Talks begin Oct. 1.

All this only helps persuade Israel's skittish leadership that when President Obama calls a nuclear-armed Iran "unacceptable," he means it approximately in the same way a parent does when fecklessly reprimanding his misbehaving teenager. That impression is strengthened by Mr. Obama's decision to drop Iran from the agenda when he chairs a meeting of the U.N. Security Council on Sept. 24; by Defense Secretary Robert Gates publicly opposing military strikes on Iran's nuclear facilities; and by Russia's announcement that it will not support any further sanctions on Iran.

In sum, the conclusion among Israelis is that the Obama administration won't lift a finger to stop Iran, much less will the "international community." So Israel has pursued a different strategy, in effect seeking to goad the U.S. into stopping, or at least delaying, an Israeli attack by imposing stiff sanctions and perhaps even launching military strikes of its own.


Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Thus, unlike Israel's air strike against Iraq's reactor in 1981 or Syria's in 2007, both of which were planned in the utmost secrecy, the Israelis have gone out of their way to advertise their fears, purposes and capabilities. They have sent warships through the Suez Canal in broad daylight and conducted widely publicized air-combat exercises at long range. They have also been unusually forthcoming in their briefings with reporters, expressing confidence at every turn that Israel can get the job done.

The problem, however, is that the administration isn't taking the bait, and one has to wonder why. Perhaps it thinks its diplomacy will work, or that it has the luxury of time, or that it can talk the Israelis out of attacking. Alternatively, it might actually want Israel to attack without inviting the perception that it has colluded with it. Or maybe it isn't really paying attention.

But Israel is paying attention. And the longer the U.S. delays playing hardball with Iran, the sooner Israel is likely to strike. A report published today by the Bipartisan Policy Center, and signed by Democrat Chuck Robb, Republican Dan Coats, and retired Gen. Charles Ward, notes that by next year Iran will "be able to produce a weapon's worth of highly enriched uranium . . . in less than two months." No less critical in determining Israel's timetable is the anticipated delivery to Iran of Russian S-300 anti-aircraft batteries: Israel will almost certainly strike before those deliveries are made, no matter whether an Iranian bomb is two months or two years away.

Such a strike may well be in Israel's best interests, though that depends entirely on whether the strike succeeds. It is certainly in America's supreme interest that Iran not acquire a genuine nuclear capability, whether of the actual or break-out variety. That goes also for the Middle East generally, which doesn't need the nuclear arms race an Iranian capability would inevitably provoke.

Then again, it is not in the U.S. interest that Israel be the instrument of Iran's disarmament. For starters, its ability to do so is iffy: Israeli strategists are quietly putting it about that even a successful attack may have to be repeated a few years down the road as Iran reconstitutes its capacity. For another thing, Iran could respond to such a strike not only against Israel itself, but also U.S targets in Iraq and the Persian Gulf.

But most importantly, it is an abdication of a superpower's responsibility to outsource matters of war and peace to another state, however closely allied. President Obama has now ceded the driver's seat on Iran policy to Prime Minister Netanyahu. He would do better to take the wheel again, keeping in mind that Iran is beyond the reach of his eloquence, and keeping in mind, too, that very useful Roman adage, Si vis pacem, para bellum.

The Patriot
09-15-2009, 09:48 AM
Obama pushing for war?

Yet another adopted Bush policy.

revefsreleets
09-15-2009, 09:59 AM
Now we know the answer as to what happens when Obama draws a line in the sand and it's crossed: Nothing.

Again, THIS is what the American people get (and deserve) for electing a guy they knew nothing about based on the fancy (and ultimately empty) rhetoric of "change".

I'm not going to push the panic button like the left did pre-Iraq II, claiming the World is going to end in nuclear holocaust simply because the US invaded Iraq, BUT this is very dangerous turf he's treading on, and I have very little faith in him at this point...

stlrtruck
09-15-2009, 11:28 AM
In this instance, Obama is treading on soil that has been a hot bed for war since Cain slayed Abel.

He should have realized there is no "dialogue" to be had with Iran and suffice it to say, Israel is also standing firm on their position. He should have done more research before he opened his mouth on the issue.

Obama is turning out to make Bush look like a Saint! Now that's poetic justice!

MACH1
09-15-2009, 12:12 PM
Now we know the answer as to what happens when Obama draws a line in the sand and it's crossed: Nothing.

Again, THIS is what the American people get (and deserve) for electing a guy they knew nothing about based on the fancy (and ultimately empty) rhetoric of "change".

I'm not going to push the panic button like the left did pre-Iraq II, claiming the World is going to end in nuclear holocaust simply because the US invaded Iraq, BUT this is very dangerous turf he's treading on, and I have very little faith in him at this point...

Thats more that I have.

Tea and crackers anyone?

arge5809
09-15-2009, 02:45 PM
Hopefully the Israelis don't drop the ball and get their @$$es handed to them by the Iraninans. This is worse than North Korea having nukes.

revefsreleets
09-15-2009, 02:51 PM
They are still far off from having true nuclear weapons, BUT the Israeli's do...both sides need to stay conventional and there is literally NO scenario in which Iran can stand up against Israel.

That's actually not the point, though...Israel should not be doing our dirty work for us, especially since Obama is sketchy at best in regards to his feelings towards them.

This is a mess, and Obama's mishandling will end up biting US in the ass...

arge5809
09-15-2009, 03:09 PM
I agree totally, but with the current administration, Israel is our best hope. Even if we were able to take care of the issue, our military would have their hands tied like they were in the current 2 fronts in Iraq and Afganistan.

It is a shame the our military has to go to war with terrorists with so many restrictions on how and when they are allowed to conduct their missions. And the Congress and mislead public and leftist media wonder why our body count is so high.

:banging:

revefsreleets
09-15-2009, 03:19 PM
Israel has NONE of the impediments...they fight wars based on survival, not public opinion...

AllD
09-15-2009, 03:21 PM
There should be a national effort to get the U.S. off imported energy. If our vehicles ran on natural gas, ethanol, biodiesel, etc and our homes were powered with more nuclear, solar, and wind, we would be in a better position to protect our safety and economy against nations that wish us harm.

If we imported no foreign oil, we could threaten Iran, if necessary and if we have a right to do so, and be very effective doing it. We could also use an Israeli proxy with much less backlash. With a global economy everybody depends on each country, so it is especially difficult with energy.

Preacher
09-15-2009, 03:22 PM
Yet another adopted Bush policy.

:doh:

I thought the Bush policy was to attack attack attack without thought. To kill millions and be a war criminal....

Now you're saying the Bush policy was to sit back and mouth empty threats and watch another terrorist nation gain nuclear weapons?

:hunch: I think you're a bit confused.

revefsreleets
09-15-2009, 03:24 PM
:doh:

I thought the Bush policy was to attack attack attack without thought. To kill millions and be a war criminal....

Now you're saying the Bush policy was to sit back and mouth empty threats and watch another terrorist nation gain nuclear weapons?

:hunch: I think you're a bit confused.

Bush = bad
Obama = good

The details aren't important...

JackHammer
09-15-2009, 08:53 PM
:doh:

I thought the Bush policy was to attack attack attack without thought. To kill millions and be a war criminal....

Now you're saying the Bush policy was to sit back and mouth empty threats and watch another terrorist nation gain nuclear weapons?

:hunch: I think you're a bit confused.

It makes you wonder why we didn't go to Iran instead of Iraq in that case. If Iran is this close to making those nukes right now then it seems like the policy of being "tough" on them hasn't really worked either, thus being "tough" amounts to empty threats too. We've been tough on Iran since 2002(ie the Axis of Evil) afterall, and in 2009 they're close to producing weapons grade nuclear materials. So the last 7 years of being tough has been ineffective. Empty threats indeed.

They're the standard, regardless of who the President is and what party they represent. Here's why: Anything short of a war or an extensive air campaign WILL NOT PREVENT Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. I don't care what kind of sanctions you put on Iran or how "tough" on them you are, they're gonna get nukes as long as China and Russia are backing them. And therein lies the problem. If Israel does something to Iran, China and Russia aren't going to overtly jump in and declare war on Israel because they know that would draw the U.S. into it. They'll give Iran support but not overtly. U.S policy in the region is similar but not the same. We're not going to do anything that we know will draw us into any kind of direct conflict with China and Russia. Invading Iran is one of those things that we won't do unless we're prepared to take on China and Russia as well.

TL;DR: IMO The U.S. policy in Iran will always amount to empty threats,regardless of who the president is, and Iran will end up with nukes unless Israel does something about it because none of the super powers will get directly involved for fear of sparking World War III.

Preacher
09-16-2009, 12:10 AM
It makes you wonder why we didn't go to Iran instead of Iraq in that case. If Iran is this close to making those nukes right now then it seems like the policy of being "tough" on them hasn't really worked either, thus being "tough" amounts to empty threats too. We've been tough on Iran since 2002(ie the Axis of Evil) afterall, and in 2009 they're close to producing weapons grade nuclear materials. So the last 7 years of being tough has been ineffective. Empty threats indeed.

They're the standard, regardless of who the President is and what party they represent. Here's why: Anything short of a war or an extensive air campaign WILL NOT PREVENT Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. I don't care what kind of sanctions you put on Iran or how "tough" on them you are, they're gonna get nukes as long as China and Russia are backing them. And therein lies the problem. If Israel does something to Iran, China and Russia aren't going to overtly jump in and declare war on Israel because they know that would draw the U.S. into it. They'll give Iran support but not overtly. U.S policy in the region is similar but not the same. We're not going to do anything that we know will draw us into any kind of direct conflict with China and Russia. Invading Iran is one of those things that we won't do unless we're prepared to take on China and Russia as well.

TL;DR: IMO The U.S. policy in Iran will always amount to empty threats,regardless of who the president is, and Iran will end up with nukes unless Israel does something about it because none of the super powers will get directly involved for fear of sparking World War III.


Honestly, I think the invasion of Iraq was step one in the planned invasion of Iran. With three ways of entry (sea, Iraq, Afganistan) we could have moved deeply into the land very quickly. We have SO many dissidents that would be willing to move right in and set up a govt.

I think Iran, Syria, and Al-Quaida looked at a map and saw the same thing. That is why they decided to fight the proxy war in Iraq, instead of in Iran.

JackHammer
09-16-2009, 01:07 AM
Honestly, I think the invasion of Iraq was step one in the planned invasion of Iran. With three ways of entry (sea, Iraq, Afganistan) we could have moved deeply into the land very quickly. We have SO many dissidents that would be willing to move right in and set up a govt.

I think Iran, Syria, and Al-Quaida looked at a map and saw the same thing. That is why they decided to fight the proxy war in Iraq, instead of in Iran.

While that's definitely a possibility, I think the purpose of Iraq was to establish a central foothold in the middle east. That's not to say Iran isn't central since it's really THE geographic center of the Middle East. Iraq was just the more doable of the two. Now that being said, I won't completely rule out a preemptive invasion of Iran. I just don't think the current state of things will allow it. A long drawn out war against a Russia/China backed Iran wouldn't be pretty, especially with Iraq fresh in our memory and the current state of Afghanistan.

Think back to the Roman empire if you want to get a sense of my take on Iraq. Once the Roman empire got so big, they realized they couldn't be everywhere at once so they started building central, regional bases throughout the empire and filled them with what were essentially response forces. They were responsible for protecting certain regions via rapid response. That's what we're doing in Iraq(among many other places in the world). If the shit hits the fan in the Middle East, we're in a position to commit a wide range of military assets in a relatively short period of time via Iraq.

Preacher
09-16-2009, 02:28 AM
While that's definitely a possibility, I think the purpose of Iraq was to establish a central foothold in the middle east. That's not to say Iran isn't central since it's really THE geographic center of the Middle East. Iraq was just the more doable of the two. Now that being said, I won't completely rule out a preemptive invasion of Iran. I just don't think the current state of things will allow it. A long drawn out war against a Russia/China backed Iran wouldn't be pretty, especially with Iraq fresh in our memory and the current state of Afghanistan.

Think back to the Roman empire if you want to get a sense of my take on Iraq. Once the Roman empire got so big, they realized they couldn't be everywhere at once so they started building central, regional bases throughout the empire and filled them with what were essentially response forces. They were responsible for protecting certain regions via rapid response. That's what we're doing in Iraq(among many other places in the world). If the shit hits the fan in the Middle East, we're in a position to commit a wide range of military assets in a relatively short period of time via Iraq.
IMO, I don't think it was a far-reaching strategy of force-projection. I think it was much more specific to Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, and "draining the swamp" as President Bush called it. I think he wanted to destroy the regimes which were purposefully undermining the mid-east and creating/continuing the unrest which foments terrorism. That being said, the issue now is Iran, with Al-Quada still at work in Iraq. I think the real issue there is that Iran and Syria have gone to war against the U.S. in Iraq. I am very upset with Bush for not coming forth and explaining exactly that fact. Especially when we KNOW that Iranian troops have crossed the border and engaged Americans.

revefsreleets
09-16-2009, 08:17 AM
I am very upset with Bush for not coming forth and explaining exactly that fact. Especially when we KNOW that Iranian troops have crossed the border and engaged Americans.

There will be a LOT revealed about this and other gross misconceptions purported by the pop media and ultimately swallowed whole by average Joe US citizen when W publishes his memoirs...