Wednesday, March 18, 2015

And To War, To War We go? On Iran As The Next Target.

Joshua Muravchik has written an opinion piece in the Washington Post about what the United States should do with respect to Iran's plan to acquire nuclear weapons.  Muravchik would like some other people to sacrifice themselves in a war against Iran, because he believes that a war with Iran is the best possible answer to the disagreements. 

Even the title of the piece says that if you are in a hurry and can't read the rest of the column:  "War with Iran is probably our best option." 

The opinion piece is fun to read if you ignore what it's all about.  Muravchik worries about nuclear weapons in the hands of Iran's hard-liners and explains to us why it is imperative to avoid that situation:

What if force is the only way to block Iran from gaining nuclear weapons? That, in fact, is probably the reality. Ideology is the raison d’etre of Iran’s regime, legitimating its rule and inspiring its leaders and their supporters. In this sense, it is akin to communist, fascist and Nazi regimes that set out to transform the world. Iran aims to carry its Islamic revolution across the Middle East and beyond. A nuclear arsenal, even if it is only brandished, would vastly enhance Iran’s power to achieve that goal.

Hmm.  I think it's Saudi Arabia that is financing and spreading the Islamic revolution across the Middle East and beyond, in the form of Sunni Wahhabism.  And Pakistan, a major base for various Islamist terrorist groups, already has nuclear weapons.  Some suggest Pakistan has a deal with the Saudis to let them have those weapons if necessary. 

Indeed, though Iran has been an eager beaver at home in propping up the rules and restrictions concerning women*, those pesky critters which just won't stay inside their allotted little cages and therefore rattle the structure of the Islamic revolution, I don't see Shia Islam as a major aspect of today's international terrorism.

The whole opinion piece is probably one of those click-bait pieces.  But it's also a little like that time-honored Tarzan move:  You bang your hairy chest with your fist and ululate, to frighten everyone who happens to be within hearing range in the jungle. 

But that doesn't work when every country in the area is run by their own Tarzans, all banging their chests.  And then you have to do something more or you lose face.

Muravchek's piece made me wonder who the "we" in the title of this post might be.  But it also acutely reminded me of the types of opinion pieces we got after 911, all telling that Iraq is the place the US should invade to find bin Laden who was in Afghanistan etc. 

*You can download a whole report on the position of women in Iran at that link.