Friday, February 10, 2006

Should Bush Bomb Iran? Too Late!

I was looking around at articles out there tonight, seeing what controversial topic to write about. While searching, I found 6 articles and 2 surveys with about the same topic: should Bush Bomb Iran? All the articles talk about the rapidly advancing nuclear program in Iran, the removal of the cameras, and all the evidence which has come out linking Iran to the Mohammed Cartoon controversy. The thing is, the articles are asking the wrong question. They should be asking if it’s too late to bomb Iran.

A bit over a month ago, people, me included, began calling for a quick strike on Iran’s nuclear enrichment plant, preventing Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon. But most people indicated that this solution was a radical one, and that the Iran issue could be maintained with diplomacy. Most people, including George Bush, underestimated the motives of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which I addressed in a post yesterday. They instead allowed the Iranian Prime Minister to continue enriching Uranium, and contemplated referral to the UN.

While the US and EU-3 contemplated potential sanctions against Iran, Iran removed its monies from European banks, spread their uranium enrichment program over multiple (maybe hundreds) of distinct locales, and removed all capability for the UN to monitor the Iranian nuclear program. At the same time, they’ve threatened to curtail oil exports in the event of sanctions, instigated global protests over the Mohammed Cartoons found in Danish paper Jyllands-Posten, and greatly sped up their nuclear enrichment program, as some experts are now estimating that Iran could have a nuclear weapon in less than 12 months.

So do we really have the capability to retaliate against recent actions by the new Iranian regime, or has that time passed? How effective could a US or Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear program be if the enrichment is being conducted in multiple sites. What damage could the US do to Iran that would be worse than the damage they could do to US society by refusing to export oil, which they can now do since the UN cannot take hold of Iranian funds? Remember, Iran is responsible for 25% of the oil imported by the US.

If the protests of this past week+ were a warning shot fired by Iran and Syria, it’s clear that an all-out attack on Iran would provoke much worse protests than we just saw. And the benefits of the attacks would be limited. I suspect that we had a narrow window to prevent Iran from achieving a nuclear weapon, and that window closed this past week.

Posted by Scottage at 1:34 AM / | |