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02 March 2012

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mo

Colonel,
Surely by now everyone and anyone interested in the subject has accepted the fact that short of using their nuclear weapons, the Israelis couldnt do anything with an attack except put the Iranian nuclear development back a couple of years while simultaneously confirming to the Iranians that the only way of stopping your enemies from attacking you at will is to actually have a detterent as powerful as a nuclear weapon.

And if we accept that we all know that to be true, then we must assume that the recent pressure the Israelis are putting on Obama has more to do with extracting something from him (maybe something wholly unrelated to Iran even) in return for not letting "the lobby" loose during the elections. All this "hold me back before I punch him" act by the Israelis seems to me to be for public consumption - And im not sure that what they seek is really US guarantees on Iran since its quite clear they already have that. So what is it they really want?

samuelburke

Col, how would an American Military Commander feel about leading American boys into a war that is being driven by Israeli interests and with the full craven support of the American Press?

Are these Commanders intelligent enough to understand how our politicians are forging the arguments for a war in which they will have to offer up for sacrifice the lives of Americas
youth.

It just sounds so irresponsible if they were intelligent enough to get it.
Sending our boys to fight to defend the Israeli flag is so not right on so many levels.

JohnH

Bibi's mission is to show the world who's in charge. And it ain't Obama.

It's starting to remind me of how Britain ruled India for so long--with almost no boots on the ground, but with a lot of skillful manipulation.

The beaver

Colonel

From Businessweek:
General Norton Schwartz, the Air Force chief of staff, said yesterday that the Joint Chiefs of Staff have prepared military options to strike Iranian nuclear sites in the event of a conflict.

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-03-01/oil-rises-a-second-day-on-iran-risk

Not to be unladylike but I guess that Bibi and the pro-Israel crowd when they can hold the President of the only superpower by ....(hostage)

BTW: Bibi will be in Ottawa today to get the blessing of Israeli-firster PM for an attack on Iran.

bIB IS IN CAN

Bibi is in Canada for a bit of cheerleading from Prime Minister "it-scares-me Harper and FM John Iran=Nazis Baird prior to Scold Obama 2012. These two can be counted on to pump him full of er, something.

mbrenner

Obama's interview with he Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg is the most shameful public display by a United States president that I can rememeber. pl has succinctly explained why. As an instance of foreign policy in action, it has great pedagogical value insofar as it demonstrates exactly what not to do. It is a veritable clinical case of how to get it all wrong - in form and substance. As an insight into Obama the man, it removes the last shred of hope that this narcissist has any realization whatsoever of what responsibility for something other than his convenience and self-interest means. He cannot read situations or persons except through the optic of adolescent self-regard.

Tragically, American now has a president who thinks and behaves like a high school kid playing president in a simulation game. He can do anything, try out anything knowing that when the game is over he'll just pack his things and join a few pals to catch the Knick's Lin on the tube.

This is what we'be become - there is no avoiding that grievous truth.

rjj

Generally with WASPS and African-Americans in-your-face, arm-waving, finger-jabbing, head-butting, high-decibel discourse is so not-done it is close to taboo.

Don't know about Indonesians.

He is incapacitated by his upbringing.

That's my hypothesis anyway. Probably wrong.

The Pagan

Col,
A link to this open source article may have appeared in one of the other discussions. If so I apologize for the the redundancy. It makes some very interesting claims.

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/article/2008/jun/02/00006/

Best Regards

The Twisted Genius

I would find it refreshing if all this talk about red lines and unacceptability went both ways. An Israeli attack on Iran is unacceptable. If Israel initiates an attack on Iran, they would cross a red line. Not only would we not join in that attack, but all official aid to Israel would be suspended and any private support by U.S. citizens or institutions would be sanctioned. Obviously, I won't be holding my breath waiting for such a statement, but something a bit more nuanced would be nice.

OmoNaija

He is a politician and has to play the game.

The question is which American Politician has the conjones to face off against the AIPAC lobby. None! Not a single one with aspirations for National office.

Why serve up on a platter, an effective talking point to the Republicans and Christainist they can milk till election come?

In fact the endless media assault to sell the narrative of an existential threat from Iran, only reinforces my view that the lobby already lost the argument and has to drag this into the public space to shape public opinion.

He's smart enough for me to give him the benefit of doubt; its unlikely he'll make the grand mistake of letting Israel drag us into another war.

zanzibar

Isn't this to be expected? Obama's first priority is his re-election followed by money making via influence peddling after he leaves office. No different than Bill Clinton and Tony Blair and the entire congressional complex before him. Why would he jeopardize that by taking a stand when both his political opposition and the craven media are fifth columnists?

I read the Guardian and The Telegraph occasionally to get an idea of what is going on in the UK. I note that both publications have pretty much every time I look a story on the Iran threat and roguishness as well as stories on Bashar Assad as tyrant and killing innocent democracy loving protestors.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/mar/01/israeli-pm-demands-obama-military-action-iran

It would seem the political environment in the UK is not much different than in the US when it comes to the ME.

mbrenner, I am not defending Obama but what do you think Republican president Dubya would be doing or for that matter the current cast of Republican presidential contenders - Romney, Gingrich and Santorum? They are all part of the Likudnik cheerleading chorus!! Aren't they also pledging fealty at the AIPAC shrine?

Let's face it - we Americans don't want a politician that is a truth teller that will pursue policies in our national interest instead of the interests of narrow special interests. Let's not blame the politicians, we elect these clowns!

Matthew

Whenever I regret (again) voting for Obama, I realize the alternative was John McCain.

Phil Giraldi

I rather suspect that Obama will give Bibi and AIPAC anything they want to secure his reelection, no matter the consequences for the rest of us if it does produce a war. We shall find out soon enough when he speaks on Sunday at AIPAC and then hosts Netanyahu on Monday. Bibi knows that he holds most of the cards that actually matter. What a tragedy - one that we will be able to watch while it unfolds as a country as great as ours once was is reduced to impotence.

Andy

In this case I think your analysis is incorrect. Whatever his reasons and intentions I think the President is making the correct war-avoidance policy choices.

So far the administration has made it clear that the US is not going to attack Iran under the present circumstances (ie. No evidence Iran is pursing weapons at this time). In addition, we also warned Israel against attempting to draw us into war through unilateral military action. That's all well and good.

We shouldn't, however, take those warnings to Israel too far. Restraining Israel needs to be subtle and balanced against Israeli paranoia. In short, the surest way to a war with Iran is to give Israel the impression that it's been strategically abandoned. The US is the only country with any significant strategic influence on Israeli action against Iran - If Israel believes the US is no longer in its corner, then I think Israel would see no alternative to independent military action. Additionally, I think it would also increase the odds Israel would use nukes against Iran.

Israel is not a typical client state and should not be treated as such - at least for now. While I know many in the comments here would like nothing better than to see Israel "put in its place" we should not ignore the likely repercussions of doing so. It's better, IMO, to play for time and try to placate Israel's paranoia while continuing to make our red lines clear, namely that we will not go to war against Iran without incontrovertible evidence they are actually producing nuclear weapons.

steve g

It appears we have voted for
Shape Shifter in Chief instead
of President. To mangle another
metaphor one hopes Obama takes a
cue from Mohammed Ali's recent 70th
birthday and "Floats like a butterfly
and stings BiBi" Alas, Mr. Brenner's
always cogent comments will out.

stanleyhenning

If Obama is merely making pronouncements that he thinks will help him win another term then this is despicable and I've had it with the whole system. Of course, if the Republicans get in we might face even worse possibilities if that is possible. Where are we going as a nation? No matter what we must not make a preemptive move or support anyone who does!

turcopolier

Andy

I am not sure what "analysis" you are speaking of. It seems to me that I asked uestions rather than gave answers.pl

turcopolier

mo

No. You are wrong. Your are outhinking yourself. This decision is nothing like made. Do you think I would waste my time if it were? pl

Morocco Bama

None! Not a single one with aspirations for National office.

It should read "None! Not a single one with a chance for National office."

To be fair, Ron Paul alleges he would stand firm distinguishing U.S. interests from Israeli interests, but he doesn't have a chance. That's not an endorsement for Ron Paul, by the way...it's just "me saying."

Morocco Bama

Let's not blame the politicians, we elect these clowns!

What do you mean "we"? I didn't elect any of them. I wrote in Tennessee Tuxedo as my candidate of choice. He said "Tennessee Tuxedo Will Not Fail" and I believed him and still believe him and am saddened he failed to win.

Mike C

(The) beaver-

That statement by Gen. Schwartz seems to be getting the most airplay, naturally, but he said more:

“Everything we have to do has to have an objective,” Schwartz told reporters at a breakfast meeting Wednesday. “What is the objective? Is it to eliminate [Iran's nuclear program]? Is it to delay? Is it to complicate? What is the national security objective?”

“There’s a tendency for all of us to go tactical too quickly, and worry about weaponeering and things of that nature,” Schwartz continued. “Iran bears watching” is about as far as the top Air Force officer was willing to go.

Here's the full article from Danger Room:

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/02/air-force-iran-bombing/

Charles I

oops, that was me CharlesI

Charles I

"OTTAWA—Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says a nuclear-armed Iran would form a hinge of history and pose a threat to the whole world.

On a visit to Ottawa today, Netanyahu said that even if Iran agrees to resume international talks on its nuclear program, it could just be a ruse to stall for time to complete a bomb program."

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1139999--a-nuclear-iran-would-be-a-threat-to-the-entire-world-netanyahu?bn=1

. . .would be a threat. . . could be a ruse, whatever is one to do?

Fred

Andy

yes, Israel is not a client state nor an ally. The actions of their government are repeatedly against the national interests of the USA. Just what 'repercussions' from putting the national interests of America first do you imply? "put them in their place"? That's not a reasoned foreign policy, either.

JohnH

"Obama will give Bibi and AIPAC anything they want to secure his reelection." But it won't be enough.

Bibi will keep tensions high enough to give speculators all they need to drive gas to $5/gallon.

Kiss Obama good-bye. Appeasement is not how to respond to blackmailers.

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