Tuesday, August 10, 2004
What the bloody hell is wrong with these people? One quagmire isn't enough? We don't have the troops to deal with the situations we're in now, much less opening up yet another front in this war.
Unless these bastards actually think the American people will sit still while they move all the troops out of Iraq and into Iran. That's just bizarre. I'm absolutely gobsmacked that they could be thinking of this.
Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | Diplomacy sidelined as US targets Iran: "The US charge sheet against Iran is lengthening almost by the day, presaging destabilising confrontations this autumn and maybe a pre-election October surprise.
The Bush administration is piling on the pressure over Iran's alleged nuclear weapons programme. It maintains Tehran's decision to resume building uranium centrifuges wrecked a long-running EU-led dialogue and is proof of bad faith.
The US will ask a meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency on September 13 to declare Iran in breach of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, a prelude to seeking punitive UN sanctions.
Iran's insistence that it seeks nuclear power, not weapons, is scoffed at in Washington. John Bolton, the hawkish US under-secretary of state for arms control, says there is no doubt what Tehran is up to. He has hinted at using military force should the UN fail to act. 'The US and its allies must be willing to deploy more robust techniques' to halt nuclear proliferation, including 'the disruption of procurement networks, sanctions and other means'. No option was ruled out, he said last year.
Last month in Tokyo, Mr Bolton upped the ante again, accusing Iran of collaborating with North Korea on ballistic missiles.
Israel, Washington's ally, has also been stoking the fire. It is suggested there that if the west fails to act against Iran in timely fashion, Israel could strike pre-emptively as it did against Iraq's nuclear facilities in 1981, although whether it has the capability to launch effective strikes is uncertain.
Condoleezza Rice, the US national security adviser, said at the weekend there was a new international willingness to confront Tehran, but declined to rule out unilateral action if others did not go along.
It gets much, much worse:
That will fuel speculation in Tehran and elsewhere that the Bush administration may resort to force, with or without Israel, ahead of November's election. Options include "surgical strikes" or covert action by special forces.
Well, lord knows they've done everything they can to get the world worried and suspicious, but I doubt she realises what they're worried and suspicious about.
Such a move would be a high-risk gamble for George Bush. After the WMD fiasco, there would inevitably be questions about the accuracy of US intelligence. In the past Iran has vowed to retaliate. Although it is unclear how it might do so, the mood in Tehran has hardened since the conservatives won fiddled elections last winter.
"I think we've finally got the world community to a place, the IAEA to a place, that it is worried and suspicious," Ms Rice said in one of a string of interviews with CNN, Fox News and NBC television. She vowed to aim some "very tough resolutions" at Iran this autumn. "Iran will either be isolated or it will submit," she said.
posted by lazarus |