Thursday, February 23, 2012

Iran, Israel, and the Bomb

For fifty years of my life (yes, I'm a kind of a geezer), I lived with something referred to as MAD — a very apt acronym for mutually assured destruction. Both the United States and the Soviet Union were sufficiently supplied with nuclear weapons to destroy each other. Neither was stupid enough to attempt a first strike, so the many times they made me duck under my desk (TAKE COVER!!!) in elementary school were a waste of time.

Mind you, we were led to believe that Soviet leaders were crazy, and that the bombs could fall at any moment. Well, nobody is that crazy, including the leaders of Iran. Considering that Israel has well over 200 nuclear weapons, many of which are submarine based, the Iranian leadership must understand that launching an atomic bomb would result in the total annihilation of Iran.

The only reason an Israeli leader would support a "preemptive" attack on Iran at this time is for the sake of internal Israeli politics. The only reason a US leader (or would-be leader) would support such an attack at this time is for the sake in internal US politics.

Face it — North Korea has the bomb, delivery systems, and some of the most bat-shit crazy leaders in all history. Even they know that a nuclear attack on, say, South Korea or Japan would result in a very severe response from those two nations' most powerful ally — the good old US of A. Even if Israel didn't have its own nukes, Israel would be safe.

In the meanwhile, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, has proclaimed nuclear weapons a sin; and both US intelligence sources and the IAEA say that Iran has not yet decided whether or not to produce a nuclear weapon. Granted, it wouldn't hurt them to have one, to counterbalance Israel in that good old MAD protocol.

Also in the meanwhile, the cold war style conflict between the US and Iran has inflated oil prices to a point where they threaten the US economic recovery. It's nothing but idiotic.

Politics notwithstanding, it's time to pull back and talk.

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