Monday, April 10, 2006

US May Nuke Iran Reports Seymour Hersh

According to Hersh, writing in the latest edition of the New Yorker, the US has passed the point of no return with Iran. In this scenario, the bunker-busting bombs would be nuclear. The Israeli role is worth noting: the specter of an Israeli strike on Iran is said to motivate Bush administration figures to elaborate war plans. I'm reminded of Dick Cheney's warning on Imus: we can only restrain them for so long! It's hard to get a clear idea of what the consensus in the Israeli security establishment is. Richard Perle commented on The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer tonight that Hersh has been wildly wrong in the past. I can't name such an instance, but this is heavy stuff at any rate.


Amos said...

Noah - why do you think it's a point of no return? The Pentagon is always making war plans. It does sound scary. I wonder you think there is any possibility that all this was an authorized leak and that it's a diversionary tactic to scare the Iranians into trying to speed up their nuclear work? Today, they announced that they have successfully enriched uranium. All this might compel the international community to impose more serious sanctions.

Noah Kaye said...

A point of no return? I'm referring to the "Catch 22" situation sketched by Seymour Hersh whereby the US administration and the likeminded views (rightly?) the possibilty of Iran gaining nuclear weapons as unacceptable, while at the same time, the Iranian regime sees the expeditious production of these weapons as their only means of survival. So what I mean is that El-Baradei may say say this is all "no crisis," but there isn't any turning back from the crisis mode. The Pentagon is always making war plans! Amos, that's the Bush talking point, in fact. So the Pentagon is always making war plans, but the prospect of a "banalization" of the nuclear option is pretty scary if that's, as Hersh argues, a new trend in war planning.

Amos said...

Good point about the banalization of the nuclear option - I think that is one of the reasons a number of military officials threatened to resign.

I see now what you meant by "point of no return."

The good thing is that Iran is no North Korea. They are still some time away from gaining nuclear weapons. Any moves they make now are only going to increase international pressure on the Iranians. I agree though that the these Pentagon war plans (or at least their leak) might leave us in that Catch 22 situation. It was interesting, however, to see the Iranian reaction - they accused Bush of "psychological warfare"! Maybe that is really what the goal was, to scare the Iranians into making another dumb, provocative move.