2007 October 21 Sunday
Dick Cheney: Iran Not Allowed To Have Nuclear Weapons

Speaking at the neoconservative Washington Institute for Near East Studies, Vice President Dick Cheney says no nukes for Iran.

If Iran continues on its current course, Cheney said the U.S. and other nations are "prepared to impose serious consequences." The vice president made no specific reference to military action.

"We will not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon," he said.

Bush only has about 15 months left in office. So then will Bush order the US military to carry out air strikes against Iranian nuclear facilities in the first quarter of 2008? Or will Bush wait until after the 2008 Presidential elections and do it then?

That's my question for ParaPundit readers today: When will the US Air Force and US Navy begin their air attack on Iran? Also, does anyone doubt whether this will really happen?

Update: A couple of former Bush Administration national security advisors see a US attack against Iran coming.

n the years after 9/11, Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann worked at the highest levels of the Bush administration as Middle East policy experts for the National Security Council. Mann conducted secret negotiations with Iran. Leverett traveled with Colin Powell and advised Condoleezza Rice. They each played crucial roles in formulating policy for the region leading up to the war in Iraq. But when they left the White House, they left with a growing sense of alarm -- not only was the Bush administration headed straight for war with Iran, it had been set on this course for years. That was what people didn't realize. It was just like Iraq, when the White House was so eager for war it couldn't wait for the UN inspectors to leave. The steps have been many and steady and all in the same direction. And now things are getting much worse. We are getting closer and closer to the tripline, they say.

The article provides insights into events that have occurred since 9/11. What bothers me most about it: Bush could have tried a good faith effort to negotiate with Iran (they offered as the article reveals) before deciding on his military path. The negotiations didn't have to cost him anything and he had years in which to conduct them quietly and in earnest. But no. The man hasn't learned a thing from his foolish invasion of Iraq.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2007 October 21 02:53 PM  MidEast Iran


Comments
Dragon Horse said at October 21, 2007 6:05 PM:

It will happen, likely after the election.

The thing is it will be an unfinished job as many of Iran's nuclear facilities are embedded in mountains or under city-centers. They are not stupid. An air strike is not going to do the job. My take is America does not have the capability to invade Iran and destroy the facilities without suffering heavy casualties that will make "Blackhawk Down" look like Disney Land.

Iran can also retaliate but upping the stakes in Iraq.

I believe that Iran will eventually get nuclear weapons and there is little American will be able to do about it in the long term. America is not really "in decline" as much as other countries have caught up since the lead we had at the end of WWII. We were the only player on the block besides the Soviet Union (which we now know was more hot air than real bite although they had a lot of nukes and a weak but large ground army).

We are going to have to get used to working through regional powers (like China) or politically negotiating with nations like Iran. In a way we are going through what the UK did after decolonization, and especially in the 1970's as their economy also went to hell and were getting eclipses by current (at the time Hong Kong) and former (Singapore) colonies. The "end of empire"...

tommy said at October 21, 2007 7:11 PM:

I agree. It will come after the election.

Wolf-Dog said at October 21, 2007 9:08 PM:

First of all, the inevitability of Iran and the Muslim world getting nukes in the future, is especially due to the fact that although civilian nuclear power reactors are complicated and rather large, a reactor that is only dedicated to making plutonium, is much simpler, far more primitive, and it can be made very small to fit in trucks. In other words, Iran can make these plutonium manufacturing reactors without the help of Russia and it can hide these mini-reactors in many hidden places or even inside trucks, although that huge unfinished Russian-made reactor is getting all the publicity in Iran.
(This is in addition to the fact that the gas centrifuges to make bomb-grade enriched uranium are also decentralized and hidden in many locations in Iran.)

Thus an air strike on Iran would only delay their nukes by a couple of years.

Finally, Iran's nukes will only be a small piece of the puzzle, for these nukes will almost certainly be given to mobile terrorist groups designed to smuggle these devices. Thus we are dealing with a decentralized adversary that is very difficult to defeat.

Derek said at October 21, 2007 10:23 PM:

It's pretty obvious we have been at war with Iran since 1978. American troops die every day by weapons the Iranians send in. Iran has run terrorist attacks across the world.
So if we bomb Iran what we are basically doing is escalating the war and people are rightfully concerned about what their response to an attack would be.
Any ideas on what they might do in response?

Now on the other hand if Iran did develop nukes 1 of 3 things would likely happen:
1. Iran would nuke Israel setting off the destruction of both nations.
2. Iran would use them to secure themselves from any future US invasion.
3. Iran would use them to secure themselves from any future US invasion and expand terrorist attacks
100 fold knowing that we would not dare to invade a nation that could kill 100,000 of our troops with single attack. Itís not going to be pretty
Americans, Jews, Europeans would die by the dozens from Iranian terrorist attacks.
Arab nations would either build nukes of their own or fall into lock step with Iran.

Based on what I know of Iran:
Case 1 would only happen if the Hardliners controlled 100% in control (Most of the mullahs enjoy being rich and
buy off the hardliners by allowing them to launch terrorists attacks. Somewhat unlikely.

Case 2 seems unlikely as they could have stopped terrorist attacks years ago and been welcome as a modern
Nation (rich with oil of course). Iran has constantly demonstrated that if you give them an inch, they will take
a mile.,

Case 3 is the most likely scenario. It makes the religious nuts happy, and secures the rich ones in their positions of power.

Mirco Romanato said at October 22, 2007 11:34 AM:

Anyone readed about the "three ipotesis of Wretchard".
If the IRI will have the bomb, nasty things will happen.
Their C&C (Command & Control) chain is not bullet proof like the US or the URSS/Russia are were.
This imply that a bomb could be used from hardliner with or without the consent of the IRI government.
If a nuke show up in the US or EU or Israel, the retaliation would be fast and furious.
Chiraq clarified that the French nules are not there only for show.

Stephen said at October 22, 2007 1:41 PM:

Derek said: Iran has run terrorist attacks across the world.

You'll need to provide a list of Iranian terrorist attacks across the world, otherwise some uncharitable people might conclude that your fears are mere fantasy...

Randall Parker said at October 22, 2007 11:01 PM:

Stephen,

The Iranians did that bomb in Argentina against Jews.

Wolf-Dog said at October 23, 2007 4:40 AM:

As I mentioned above, in the future the rising Islamic superpower will be highly decentralized and it will probably be the first global superpower whose military is pure guerrilla, even with the nukes they will use. This would make it impossible to defeat the rising superpower without committing genocide, because retaliation to a few important places like the government centers of Iran, etc, simply will not be a deterrent. Just imagine a scenario in the year 2025, when 500 nukes have been smuggled into the most important population centers of Europe, and an ultimatum has been issued: "surrender immediately, or else..."

Anon said at October 23, 2007 6:17 AM:

"Just imagine a scenario in the year 2025, when 500 nukes have been smuggled into the most important population centers of Europe, and an ultimatum has been issued: "surrender immediately, or else..."


It won't be necessary to smuggle anything into Europe if the current islamization continues and the Europeans refuse to run out these savages. By that time, the muslims in France willl have the keys to the nuclear arsenal.

Wolf-Dog said at October 23, 2007 7:54 AM:

Anon:"
It won't be necessary to smuggle anything into Europe if the current islamization continues and the Europeans refuse to run out these savages. By that time, the muslims in France willl have the keys to the nuclear arsenal."
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

You are missing the point because Europeans wrote the book of racism, and as soon as the United States becomes unable to subsidize the net trade surplus of EU (currently EU has a net trade surplus with the world even though EU has a growing trade deficit with China) by means of its enormous $700 billion annual trade deficit, then within a few years Europe will develop more hostility against immigrants of all sorts, but especially against Muslims. At that time, there will NOT be any French Muslim officers who will be allowed to gain high ranks in the French strategic forces, because there will be discriminatory measures. The coming wave of discrimination in Europe, will only increase the hostility between the emerging Islamic superpower and Europe. The fight will be to the death, and at that time, the existence of the nukes in the hands of the emerging Islamic superpower will play a role, as a bargaining chip to prevent Europe from deporting their Muslim minorities (already born there.)

tommy said at October 23, 2007 11:51 AM:
The Iranians did that bomb in Argentina against Jews.The Iranians did that bomb in Argentina against Jews.
.

And Beirut and very possibly Khobar.

Kenelm Digby said at October 24, 2007 2:35 AM:

Wolf-Dog,
I love your analyses, and I blieve they reveal high intelligence and great intuition, but I take issue with you on one point: The political class that governs 'Europe' (ie the only people who really matter)have more loyalty, respect and love towards muslims and other non-indigenous invaders than towards the native inhabitants of their lands.

Wolf-Dog said at October 24, 2007 4:01 AM:

Kenelm Digby: Thanks but I am not that intelligent. However, I have some family in Europe, and even though I am American, I also have some European memories: I know that the European politicians do have one thing in common with American politicians: they have a shelf life that ranges between 4 to 7 years, depending on for how many years the president or prime minister is elected. Jacques Chirac did favor the Muslims like you said, but the new guy has diametrically opposed beliefs. So if the European economy suffers in a few years, there will be mass hysteria against immigrants in Europe. Already Switzerland is creating legislation that will make it possible to deport the entire family of a child who commits a crime, even if the parents have been good immigrants for many years. And I have read in an article somewhere that many British Muslims (born there) are trying to immigrate to the United States due to the personal discrimination they have been suffering from. Germany used to have the most civilized and cultured political and technological infrastructure before 1932, but suddenly a totally different group of people came to power. So politicians in Europe can change very fast.

Angry said at October 24, 2007 5:57 AM:

"And I have read in an article somewhere that many British Muslims (born there) are trying to immigrate to the United States due to the personal discrimination they have been suffering from"

Great, more muslims trying to get into the US! And they will be let in no doubt. We must not have enough fucked muslim fanatics or something. Like I said, we are going to get these lunatics blowing up subways, trains, buses, etc...

Too bad about the discrimination they are getting in England, my heart breaks for these savages. However, a quick return to their native Pakistan or Yemen or wherever will ensure no more hurt feelings.

Ned said at October 24, 2007 7:11 AM:

Shocking article from Esquire on the Bush Administration's secret plans for a war with Iran:

http://www.esquire.com/features/iranbriefing1107.


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