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Feb 11, 2007

U.S. to Attack Iran This Year?

Posted by in category: geopolitics

From Guardian Unlimited:

Target Iran: US Able to Strike in Spring
Despite denials, Pentagon plans for possible attack on nuclear sites are well advanced

US preparations for an air strike against Iran are at an advanced stage, in spite of repeated public denials by the Bush administration, according to informed sources in Washington.

The present military build-up in the Gulf would allow the US to mount an attack by the spring. But the sources said that if there was an attack, it was more likely next year, just before Mr Bush leaves office.

Neo-conservatives, particularly at the Washington-based American Enterprise Institute, are urging Mr Bush to open a new front against Iran. So too is the vice-president, Dick Cheney. The state department and the Pentagon are opposed, as are Democratic congressmen and the overwhelming majority of Republicans. The sources said Mr Bush had not yet made a decision. The Bush administration insists the military build-up is not offensive but aimed at containing Iran and forcing it to make diplomatic concessions. The aim is to persuade Tehran to curb its suspect nuclear weapons programme and abandon ambitions for regional expansion.
Robert Gates, the new US defence secretary, said yesterday: “I don’t know how many times the president, secretary [of state Condoleezza] Rice and I have had to repeat that we have no intention of attacking Iran.”

But Vincent Cannistraro, a Washington-based intelligence analyst, shared the sources’ assessment that Pentagon planning was well under way. “Planning is going on, in spite of public disavowals by Gates. Targets have been selected. For a bombing campaign against nuclear sites, it is quite advanced. The military assets to carry this out are being put in place.”

He added: “We are planning for war. It is incredibly dangerous.”

A fearful scenario.

It may really be that having a stable civilization requires that only a few countries have access to nuclear weapons. If so, then it would be in the best interests of the planet for additional countries to be prevented from developing nuclear weapons. I am not saying that I support war with Iran — my point could be wrong, or Iran may not be developing weapons — but it should be considered that a pan-nuclear world would be a disastrous state for a civilization to be in.

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Comments — comments are now closed.

  • Randy Roach on February 12, 2007 8:22 am

    It seems to me there is a great deal of difference between planning an attack and intending to attack. I’m certain the military has contingency plans for Iran; they would be remiss in their duties if they didn’t. I’m equally certain there are detailed plans to attack North Korea, China, and every other concievable adversary. Gates said “we have no intention of attacking Iran” but that doesn’t preclude prudent contingency planning.

    There are many problems with nuclear proliferation including increased probability that the weapons will fall into terrorist hands; increased chance of accident; increased chance of war by mistake (false alarm, asteroid strike interpreted as attack, etc.); and lack of traditional deterrents.

    This last problem is the most disturbing. During the Cold War, the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) made the thought of nuclear war unthinkable. However, with nuclear weapons under the control of those who believe the 13th Imam will return as the Mahdi to restore Islam as the dominant faith. The President of Iran is a follower of this belief and he seems bent on hastening the Islamic ‘end days’, much like his fundamentalist Christian counterparts.

    Obviously MAD will not deter someone who wants to bring on the Apocalypse. Apparently the mindset is “kill ‘em all, let Allah sort ‘em out”. The concept that kept us relatively safe during the Cold War no longer applies.

    That’s why they must be denied nuclear weapons.

  • randpost on February 17, 2007 2:47 pm

    Yes, more war and killing by the Americans. Sounds good to me..

  • 12th Monkey on March 17, 2007 10:33 am

    Bush supposedly believes in the Rapture of course. By Randy’s logic that means he should be denied nuclear weapons as well. Is Bush’s apocalypticism just posturing to pander to the religious right? Maybe, but then the same might well be true of Amadinijad’s.

    The argument about contingency plans is specious. The US may have plans to invade Canada in some dusty drawer but it seems to be *actively* developing these Iranian ones.

    Finally a general comment. I have to admit that this site suffers a lot from what I see on a lot of these “futurist” or “transumanist” oriented sites. It has attracted the usual contingent of belligerent right wingers and spaced out Heinlein fanboy types. These people do great harm to what really could be a force for progress in the world. Anyone actually interested in saving humankind from existential threats needs to realize that the current American militarism, as exemplified by these insane plans for yet another war, IS one of those threats.