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Tuesday, April 25, 2006


When Clinton left office, we had peace and prosperity . Oil was $28 a gallon. Unemployment was at record lows. Human rights were being respected. Democracy was flourishing and spreading throughout the world.

Then came the SCOTUS coup d'etat. Unemployment is up, wages are stagnant or declining, millions of workers have lost their benefits and retirement plans. But corporate profits are at record highs. Oil is at $70 a barrel (or, as Bush the Oilman would say, "Mission Accomplished"). People, both ours and theirs, are dying daily in Iraq (and Afghanistan, too, which is less and less stable as each day passes). More and more women are now being oppressed in our client states by Sharia law, passed with the consent of the Bush Administration.

As if they hadn't accomplished enough already, Bush, Cheney and Rove are now casting their gaze on Iran--surely that war would be a good war, bring up their poll numbers, and save the Republican majorities this fall. I mean, what could go wrong?

Zbigniew Brzezinski had a bit to say today in an editorial:
Iran's announcement that it has enriched a minute amount of uranium has unleashed urgent calls for a preventive U.S. air strike by the same sources that earlier urged war on Iraq. If there is another terrorist attack in the United States, you can bet your bottom dollar that there will be also immediate charges that Iran was responsible in order to generate public hysteria in favor of military action.
He outlines four reasons why we should not attack Iran:
But there are four compelling reasons against a preventive air attack on Iranian nuclear facilities:

1. In the absence of an imminent threat (with the Iranians at least several years away from having a nuclear arsenal), the attack would be a unilateral act of war. If undertaken without formal Congressional declaration, it would be unconstitutional and merit the impeachment of the President. Similarly, if undertaken without the sanction of the UN Security Council either alone by the United States or in complicity with Israel, it would stamp the perpetrator(s) as an international outlaw(s).

2. Likely Iranian reactions would significantly compound ongoing U.S. difficulties in Iraq and in Afghanistan, perhaps precipitate new violence by Hezbollah in Lebanon, and in all probability cause the United States to become bogged down in regional violence for a decade or more to come. Iran is a country of some 70 million people and a conflict with it would make the misadventure in Iraq look trivial.

3. Oil prices would climb steeply, especially if the Iranians cut their production and seek to disrupt the flow of oil from the nearby Saudi oil fields. The world economy would be severely impacted, with America blamed for it. Note that oil prices have already shot above $70 per barrel, in part because of fears of a U.S./Iran clash.

4.America would become an even more likely target of terrorism, with much of the world concluding that America's support for Israel is itself a major cause of the rise in terrorism. America would become more isolated and thus more vulnerable while prospects for an eventual regional accommodation between Israel and its neighbors would be ever more remote.
He concludes:
American policy should not be swayed by a contrived atmosphere of urgency ominously reminiscent of what preceded the intervention in Iraq.
Read the whole thinghere.


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