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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Wrong Person For Advice on Iran

So, suppose you are David Ignatius at the Washington Post, and you are working on an op/ed piece about the current Iranian nuclear crisis. You need someone credible in the national security arena to quote and help show your point that we should take a slow road with Iran. Who do you pick to help you out? Would Jimmy Carter's National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski be the first choice? I guess if you want to make the point that Iran can destroy a Presidency there's no one other than Carter himself more qualified.

Ignatius actually makes some good points in the article, in that there has to be some "outside the box" thinking on this issue. Iran isn't the standard issue diplomatic mission that other countries, even Cuba in 1962 were or are. He's also right that the President would be foolish not to be planning for a possible war with Iran.

He, through Brzezinski; also tries to make some that I think are totally off the mark, such as "..The ending of America's present role in the world" if there were a war with Iran. I personally think the aftermath of not stopping Iran from going nuclear would have a more profound effect on our place in the world.

Brzezinski is most likely right in his thought that Iran is probably 5 or more years from possessing an actual nuclear weapon, but his idea that we wait because "The mullahs aren't the future of Iran, they're the past", is almost silly. I'm sure he thought in 1979 that they'd never hang around this long. However what they've proved very adept at is giving just enough freedom to the people to keep another revolution over the horizon.

When the people clamored for some of the western style amenities they had lost because of the revolution they loosened up certain restrictions, and showed them to the country. Shortly thereafter they started a crackdown on the press for allowing criticism to rise in the first place.

When the people started pushing for democratic reforms, they suddenly got elections of a President and Parliment. Never mind that the Mullah's can veto anything they do, and have pulled candidates from ballots for being to liberal. After a few years of a President who mentioned trying to rebuild relations with "the Great Satan" the next election featured only hardline candidates.

So you have to wonder if these Mullah's, while not the future, won't be able to hold out long enough to become the nuclear nightmare everyone fears. My guess is they can, which means the nuclear option does have to be removed. However, it doesn't have to happen in the next three weeks, or even next year. It does have to happen with a consensus in the world community.

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Blogger abbas said...


8:23 AM  
Blogger abbas said...

I'll use it as the baseline of my op-ed at our newspaper(in tehran).

8:27 AM  
Blogger Little Miss Chatterbox said...

Yah, Iran is a ticking timebomb. And you can bet I wouldn't be consulting anyone having ANYTHING to do with Jimmy Carter for wise advice on anything, but especially on Iran :-).

10:32 AM  
Blogger shoprat said...

I don't think the mullahs are the future of Iran either, but that future is not going to come without blood, sweat and tears. Until that price is paid the mullahs are the reality we must deal with.

3:30 PM  
Blogger Crazy Politico said...

Abbas, Let me know when it's published, and I'll give it a read, if it's in english of course :)

LMC, the big question is how does it get defused?

Shoprat- I think, unfortunately you are right. A coup in the country would be better than outside intervention, but I'm not sure that will happen anytime soon.

4:02 PM  

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