Wednesday, December 05, 2007

The Iranian Nuclear "Threat"

In the most recent National Intelligence Estimate on Iran, the Bush administration reluctantly (and embarrassingly) admitted that the Iranian nuclear weapons program, which has been the focus of its policy towards Iraq, doesn't actually exist.

In the past, when asked about the possibility of military action against Iran, Bush has repeatedly said that "all options are on the table," and that the United States would use force against Iran if diplomacy failed.

And yet yesterday (12/4), facing questions about his own administration's assessment that Iran actually halted its nuclear weapons program in 2005, Bush repeated and confirmed his policy that "all options are on the table."

That's right, the President of the United States still holds out the possibility that we might bomb or invade a country that, according to our own intelligence agencies, (a) has no nuclear weapons, (b) is not building any nuclear weapons, and (c) has (as far as we can tell) no present intention of building any nuclear weapons, simply because that country might change its mind and start to build nuclear weapons in the future.

Is that crazy? Yes, but it is also consistent with a President who does not know how to govern or negotiate except through fear. Bush does not know how to negotiate with Iran except with threats, and Bush does not know how to lead this country without first trying to scare its citizens.

No comments: