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November 28, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Attacking Iran would be foolish

It would be extremely foolish for Israel to attack Iran.

If Israel were to attack Iran with regular bombs, including “buster bombs,” all Israel would do would be to delay the development of atomic weapons by Iran by a few years.

When, not if, Iran develops atomic weapons, Iran could launch them at Israel to overcome the humiliation it previously suffered. Nothing humanity could do would prevent Iran’s action. If Israel wants to survive, it must use its atomic weapons against Iran such that Iran will never be able to develop atomic weapons.

If such action by Israel were to cause World War III with the deaths of billions, so be it. The cause of those deaths would not be Israel, but all of the nations of the world that permitted Iran to even come close to developing weapons of mass destruction when the stated aim of Iran was to whip Israel off the face of the map, killing every Israeli.

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  1. Israel is in a really tough spot, but the calculous for them is the same one that exists for us.

    If Iran is to be attacked by anyone using conventional weapons, it must be recognized that any delay in their drive to obtain nuclear weapons will be temporary as long as the present government stands. Thus, the attacker must be ready and willing to return and attack again as many times as necessary to ensure Iran does not go nuclear. The US doesn't have what it takes to make and keep that committment. If Israel doesn't either, it has no business attacking Iran.

    Michael

  2. Dennis comment on this issue just re-enforces the idiocy and lunacy of ignoring our deficit spending and debt, as former President Bush did and as current President Obama is doing. Not only is it slowly destroying our economy, but it ties our hands in important foreign policy matters.

    Michael

  3. When and If Iran completes it's quest for nuclear weapons the number one target will be Israel.Iran with it's religious beliefs could care less about the the destruction of it's own country for attacking Israel. Israel will respond, and should take measures to prevent Iran from carrying out It's evil plan.

  4. "If such action by Israel were to cause World War III with the deaths of billions, so be it."

    Brent -- I seriously hope you didn't really mean this.

    "We have long since made clear that a state of war is not a blank check . . . when it comes to the rights of th[is] Nation's citizens" -- Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, 542 U. S. 507, 536 (2004)

  5. samspeaks contributes nothing of substance to the dialogue when he demagogues this issue. There is no military solution that won't end in sorrow for all of us. Iran is not suicidal but talk such as the letter writer or sam engages in can push people to do stupid things.

  6. I said that if Israel attacks Iran, they must be willing to do it again if the Iranian government doesn't fall. I'm not sure what I'd do if I were Israel. The fact that neither the US or Israel has attacked Iran shows what a difficult decision it is.

    I recognize that I cannot criticise anything about President Obama according to Frank. It's his right to feel that way, but it is a foolish stance to take.

    Michael

  7. As I see it, the majority of American's agree that Israelis have a right to exist and live in peace. That's good. What American's can't seem to agree on is what course of action Israel, along with the USA & its western partners, can or should take against the fanatics presently in power in Iran. Looking at Israel's track record over its 64 year history, I have confidence that those folks not only can, but will, do whatever it takes to survive. Hopefully, Osama Obama will grow a backbone and quit bowing & scraping in his effort to appease foreign leaders. Unfortunately, I see Osama Obama as the second-coming of the peanut farmer, Jimmy Carter. And those of us alive during the Iranian hostage taking saw what the peanut farmer did when push came to shove. Nothing! The Iranians released the hostages as Ronald Reagan was being sworn in. Real strength beats wishy-washy blather!

  8. Seems to be a lot of sabre rattling from the armchair Generals here.

    Israel is not going to initiate any kind of first strike against Iran for anything. Mainly because, even if they were leaning towards doing something stupid as that, they know the other countries, even in the Arab League purview, would not look kindly upon it. They would end up as a pariah State. And this is something Israel does not want.

    Even as I type this, American diplomats are already on top of this talking to Israel as well as other countries in the region.

    This beating of breasts and already proclaiming cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war is nothing but idle dangerous talk.

    The simple fact of the matter is that diplomacy has not failed nor evaporated regarding Iran. As a reminder, war only starts when there is breakdown in diplomatic negotiations. That CLEARLY hasn't happened yet. Nor is it envisioned anytime soon.

    It seems like my friends in the Tea/Republican Party all seem to like war rhetoric talk to make them sound tough. We've seen this before. People who have no business involved in intricate foreign policy are throwing out stuff to fire up people. And it's thrown out casually like a used piece of chewing gum. Only for political purposes to get elected office.

    And this makes me mad. Because idle threats like this will cause American blood to flow. Military lives will be expended unnecessarily. They may not realize it, but they seem to be taking liberties with other peoples' lives. With no clearcut end in sight. Just paying attention to the here and now, not worried about where America will end up when it's all over. Usually in the toilet, judging from the past.

    Like I say, we seen this before. With creepy civilian dudes like Wolfowitz, Cheney, Bush Junior, and Rove (to name a few) who have no business making competent military decisions. Answer this question: You are going to listen to a strange Christian Conservative unpopular nutball like Rick "Man On Dog Sex" Santorum regarding decisions about a nuclear capable Iran and the surrounding geo-political situation in that region? I know my answer. Not no, but hell no. I wouldn't even allow that guy to change the oil on a 1968 Chevy Camaro.

    Anyways, a lot of hot air expended. Only for political purposes.

    I trust President Obama and his administration with these tough decisions. Why? Because, in the past, they have shown they can handle intricate foreign policy decisions by making sane, competent and timely decisions to achieve an acceptable goal. I don't foresee that trend changing.

    No matter what knuckleheads on the other side of the aisle spout while banging on podiums, President Obama is one of us, will always be an American, our nation's very first African American President, and has demonstrated in no uncertain terms he has best interests of America at heart. Quit standing in his way and stand with him.

  9. Colin,

    I hope I am wrong but from what I've seen so far, for the world regarding Iran, there are only two choices.

    1) Continue with the sanctions and negotiations and watch Iran go nuclear.

    2) Attack and destroy their nuclear capability and be willing to return as often as possible to destroy it again until that government is no longer in power.

    Both choices are awful, for us, for Israel and for the world. Former President Bush had no answer for Iran and I suspect President Obama does not have one either. It is a really tough issue.

    Michael

  10. Understand what you are saying, wtplv, but you are basing your theory on something that is not proven yet.

    Your first point is not valid. As of now, there are absolutely no indications that Iran possesses a workable atomic bomb. They are in the rudimentary stage right now, and are not even close to finishing and perfecting the science of it. They are right now in a phase pretty much the same boat as north Korea. And they are utilizing this as a diplomatic tool (just like north Korea). Playing a game of poker and making people think they have a hand...they clearly don't have.

    They may have the capability to make one at a later date, but that still don't mean anything. Especially if they haven't conducted any testing on it, coupled with the fact they must possess a good delivery system. There are not even any hints they are at this point where an atomic bomb will work, or even have the capability to throw it at another country.

    Your second point is nothing but formulating a solution, but it is based upon flawed information.

    Like I have said before, using Iran as a campaign issue by the Tea/Republican Party is the ticket they use. The very idea of fearmongering people to believe those evil bastard Islamoes are going to attack America is only meant to get them votes. It is a sick game they play. And they continually play it.

    But it's politics. Most people stand by this President and his administration of experts. The knee jerk reaction to go to war is something the previous President used.

    I don't buy into this political pawn game the Tea/Republicans love to throw out there all the time. Because it is a known fact that THEY are the ones wanting everyone to participate in. You don't have one single person in the President Obama administration talking about beating the war drums, nor any of the experts in our military are saying it's a prudent form of action.

    Tea/Republicans need to sit on the sidelines and let the people who are proven experts take care of this. They clearly have no earthly clue what to do except get us into a war, or drum up the people into that course of action. The previous President did that. And we're on to this now. It's not gonna work again.

  11. Wow Colin! You might try taking a step back from conspiracy theory land.

    1) Not every R or Tea Party member is a war monger who wants to manipulate the public into supporting continual war. Not every R or Tea Party or Conservative owns a company or would benefit from a war.

    2) The information available can provide no definitive determination as to how far along Iran is or is not in creating a nuclear weapon.

    3) From what we do know, Iran does not have a delivery system for a weapon, such as a long range missile. However, nuclear weapons and material can be smuggled into a country in a number of ways.

    4) There have been many in government (and not just R's and Tea Partiers, who have expressed real concern about Iran and nuclear weapons.

    I actually like President Obama's low key approach in many areas of foreign policy but your one sided view of anybody in the other party is quite similar to many who write to the Sun. It also mirrors those on the Conservative side that completely demonize President Obama, just like those that did the same thing to former President Bush and former President Clinton before him.

    I guess it is comforting to wrap oneself in conspiracy theories and believe completely in goodness of one side and the complete evil of the other. Unfortunately, life doesn't really work that way.

    Michael

  12. Only the right wing can save us from certain doom! Total annihilation and a eternal hell! Unless the right wing is in charge, only the Republicans can keep you safe!

    Alright, I am guilty of being sarcastic. I was just pointing out that the right wing employs tactics of fear and terror and end of the world scenarios to scare people for votes.

    This Iran issue is of course a serious business and of course military action may be necessary. But war is a option of last resort, After all the Iranians are using Russian technology maybe there will be a Chernobyl moment in there future. That is if the short life span of a Iranian nuclear scientists is reversed.

  13. acejoker (Jim Reid),

    Calm down. I said they did not have 'long' range(read intercontinental) missles. I am aware of the reports that they have missles capable of reaching Israel.

    I also think it likely that the Mullahs and the idiot leader in Iran might very well use nuclear weapons on Israel if they got the chance.

    For this reason, I expect that Israel might well attack. If they do, nobody has 'any' idea of the repurcussions. We (UNITED STATES) have no control over what Israel does. We'll just have to suffer the consequences, like the rest of the world will. We invented to evil genie of nuclear weapons, used it to stop a world war, let it slip into Soviet hands and now have to reap what we sowed.

    I don't blame Israel if they feel they must attack but I am worried about the consequences, just I am worried about allowing Iran to get nuclear weapons.

    Michael

  14. I must admit, I'm at a loss when it comes to just who this "colin" is? Is he Rip van Winkle or Neville Chamberlin? One is no better than the other. One slept so long that everything passed him by and when he finally awoke, it was too late. The other appeased an evil dictator and when he finally realized it, it was too late. "colin" or whoever he actually is, states that if Israel strikes Iran it will become "a pariah state." Apparently he is not cognizant of the state of affairs in the Middle East. Israel is already a "pariah state" when it comes to most Muslim nations. Any, besides Jordan & Egypt, recognize the state of Israel? Any, besides Jordan & Egypt, have normal relations with the 64-year-old nation of Israel? If the Arab nations really believed in the right of Israel to exist and stood by the United Nations charter, the Palestinians would have had their state in 1948, war would have averted and 100s of 1,000s would not have been killed. The US has endured only one 9-11; Israel have endured ten times as many! Asking Israel to wait until Iran hands off nuclear weapons to Hezbollah or Hamas is asking that Jews & Israel meekly walk into the ovens once again. Not going to happen!

  15. lvfacts101 (Jerry Fink),

    Based on his comments, I think most people would conclude that Colin would not favor an attack on Iran until Iran attacked someone first.

    I am actually in favor of that doctrine myself, except in the case of a nuclear attack. Maybe Colin can give his response to this hypothetical:

    An unnamed nation's leader and government has stated repeatedly that America is not a real nation and it must be wiped off the face of the earth. This government has supported proxies that have repeatedly attacked America with non nuclear weapons. It is reasonable to assume that within the next few years or sooner, this nation will possess a nuclear weapon and the means to deliver it in America. America has defensive weapons and the means to destroy Iran but Iran's leaders know this and just keep threatening America.

    If you're the American President, what do you do?

    Colin, would you care to offer an answer to this very tough question?

    Michael

  16. "In roleplaying situations, right wing authoritarians tend to seek dominance over others by being competitive and destructive instead of cooperative. In a study by Robert Altemeyer, authoritarians played a three hour simulation of the Earth's future entitled the Global change game. Unlike a comparison game played by individuals with low right wing authoritarian scores, which resulted in world peace and widespread international cooperation, the simulation by authoritarians became highly militarized and eventually entered the stage of nuclear war. By the end of the high RWA game, the entire population of the earth was declared dead."

    As noted Iranians aren't suicidal. You may get the occasional suicide bomber who is poor as dirt to strap on a bomb so some group will financially provide for their family, but no one wants to die in an all out conflict.

    Pakistan already has nuclear weapons and they know as well as Iran does that they will lose in an exchange.

    Future - "Obama came into office with an appeasement approach to Iran and the Nukes. Obama's Appeasement has not worked."

    Have you fallen and can't get up? Your comments are pure insanity. How can anyone with half a brain actually believe this garbage? Obama's sanctions are taking their toll on the Iranian economy and they will cave sooner or later, as long as China and Russia continue working with Obama.

  17. Vernos,

    I'm not advocating an attack on Iran but I take take issue with some of what you have said.

    'As noted Iranians aren't suicidal.'- and you know this 'how'? I can't prove they are suicidal (although they talk like they are) and you can't prove they are are not suicidal.

    Vernos, think about this. Thousands and thousands of Israeli's have been murdered at the direction of Iran using terrorists as proxies. Israel could have relatiated militarily and pulverized Iran or they could have nuked them. Iran know this but went ahead anyway. This shoots a few holes in your 'theory' that Iran is not suicidal. Maybe not suicidal but certainly willing to take great risks against a nation that is very powerful militarily.

    The sanctions are brutal and should continue but Vernos, from all indications, they have not stopped Iran's pursuit of a nuclear weapon. You can define 'cooperation' anyway you like, but to call what China and Russia have done ' cooperation' I think is a stretch.

    Michael

  18. lvfacts101---

    Enjoy your comments, but I respectfully have to decline on making a comment about what you typed when you reference me by name. If a comment was even asked for, I'm not sure.

    Except for the fact to point out to you I don't like your totally condescending tone you conveyed explicitly through the typed word. Not sure if you meant it to come off like that, but it sure as hell did.

    Kind of hard to respond to and/or enter into a discussion with someone who has no respect not only for you, but themself as well.

    Good luck to you in the future.

  19. Comment removed by moderator. Off Topic

  20. wtlpv---

    Answering your question, I don't know. You can see this is a very complex foreign policy decision. Thankfully people who are paid to react to situations like this seem to be dealing with this as expertly/professionally as they can.

    My main point is that the people on the other side of the aisle seem to be bouncing this issue around like a pinball. And they do it to score political points. Not to do anything to solve this problem.

    This continual beating of the war drums is simply stupid. Politicians DO NOT automatically go that route first (well, except for Bush Junior with Iraq, but that's another matter). Our politicians are actually listening to the Generals/Admirals who have loudly proclaimed a military option right now is not prudent, and it will not help alleviate this at all, on the other hand, it will make it worse.

    And the main reason is it isn't to that point yet. I don't care if you hate President Obama, but the politicians must be involved. And they are.

    Diplomacy, including negotiations through the United Nations, sanctions, U.S. Navy power projection (through the Straits of Hormuz), and continual talking is what is being done right now. And other nations in this world are just as concerned as the United States, participating in these efforts. They are working with the same tools to try to achieve the same results also.

    Now, as far as Israel goes, they add something to this problem also. The problem there is that the Government in power there is ultra-right wing. So, America has to continually work with them and calm them down, while at the same time make sure they understand we are an ally and have the same interests. For them to even think about doing an "attack them before they attack us" is not going to work.

    Iran is playing a power game right now. For them to carry through with these threats is simply stupid. They know the consequences. If they don't, they need to be reminded. And not only America, but the world, is telling them the stupid course of action they are pursuing.

    Also, mark my words, I am very, very sure Iran is following the same course as north Korea regarding this nuclear/atomic bomb possession thing. They are playing a high stakes game of poker, where they are saying I have the upper hand...when they clearly don't.

    This same situation happened with north Korea. THOSE PEOPLE ARE STARVING TO DEATH. But they choose to play games with their country, seeking concessions.

    I really suspect Iran is going the same route of playing end game and performing brinksmanship...holding their own people hostage.

    This cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war talk by the Tea/Republicans is serious disingenuous and harmful. They think it helps their chances to get into power, but it don't. It just fortifies the fact they suck at foreign policy. When you warmonger and fearmonger all the time, no one trusts you with the reigns of power anymore.

  21. Colin,

    I'll be the first agree that the Iraq and Afghanistan wars did not go as planned and that R's suffered a loss of confidence with the public as a result.

    The same will be true for the D's if just one of your suppositions is incorrect and some country is attacked by Iran with nukes.

    It's a dangerous game to be sure, much like those that wanted to take out Hitler becfore he became too powerful and those that wanted to wait. In that instance, most would have been better off if he had been crushed early. 20 million people died in WWII. Is Iran that crazy? Nobody knows. Everyone is entitled to their 'opinion' and only history will show who was right.

    Michael

  22. Keep up the embargo and bring Iran's economy into chaos, whereby the Rich Mullahs, who are in love with the dollar as much as their own religion, will find a way to completely halt Ahmadinejad's aging process. Don't skewer the masses for a madman. He is as easy to get as closing the Straits of Hormuz.

  23. The fact is there WILL be a war in the Middle East as there has been almost constant conflict there for millennia. We cannot prevent it.

    The USAs phony nation building of the last ten years appears to have facilitated this situation. It appears to have deliberately empowered some less powerful sects to the detriment of others who used to have power. It has toppled secular governments in favor of Jihadist leaning people.

    The Arabs have been at almost constant war of various types with themselves or the Persians for well over 2000 years. Tribe on tribe and sect on sect continues in each region of the Middle East as it has for centuries.

    The Persians are majority Shia and their friends in Iraq are also majority Shia. Other than Bahrain which is majority Shia; the Arabs and Turks are all majority Sunni.

    Iran is surrounded by countries that hate it's very existence AND were often subject to it's various empires in the past.

    This all leaves out Realpolitik in Afghanistan which is about to see a resurgent Taliban. Last weekend, the national Public radio had a story which contrasted the "law and order" stance of the Taliban with the "corruption of the Karzai" regime. It mentioned that many Afghans would like to see the Taliban back. It completely failed to mention the horrors they would bring with them to the people of Afghanistan.

    I don't think the timing was accidental, I see this as a signal that the USA is getting ready to give Karzai a Swiss Chalet where he can use his stolen billions. The Obama Administration may be getting ready to try and make lemonade out of mud folks.

  24. Iran faces a delicate issue. On the one hand it wants to show the world all its got and put it at ease, while on the other hand it fears that such show 'n tell will give its enemies a road map to bomb it.
    Saddam Hussein faced a similar dilemma ten years ago. Though he wanted the world to know he had nothing to hide, he also wanted to bluff his archenemy Iran into believing that Iraq still had WMD.
    Bluffing did not go well for Saddam, and it might not go well for Amadijan.
    But since the price tag for ridding Saddam proved so high, maybe we ought to reflect what we are asking of Iran now. On the eve of a threat to attack it, we are asking it to take us to the depths of its arsenal and show us all it's got.
    Such great expectations are a sign we have been talking to our friends too long and are in need of a broader perspective.
    Exactly when was the last time we asked Pakistan, India, China or Russia to show us their arsenal?
    "But those countries are not advocating the destruction of Israel," you say.
    True, but Israel is not a thorn on their side either.
    Surely, however, we can see beyond Iran's hyperboles and figure out their underlying purpose. Or have we forgotten that not all Iranians are thrilled with Amadijan?
    He sure has not forgotten that he is not loved in Iran.
    Nor has he forgotten that that his countrymen hate Israel even more. So he tells them that Israel will be wiped from the face of the earth.
    Expectantly, this nonsense unites them against a common enemy. It even becomes a diversion from the misery and isolation brought on by the theocratic regime.
    Quite Clever work by Amadijan -- and not a rial spent or a bullet fired.
    So why are we letting this crazy talk about destroying Israel get us all worked-up -- and to the point of turning the world topsy-turvy again.
    Can we not see the desperate attempts of an unpopular regime simply trying to hold on to power?