February 11, 2007

Reasons for Attacking Iran

The drum beat of war with Iran is unmistakable. A synopsis of that would be it's own topic. We're facing a "Boy who cried wolf moment," but I'm not buying the drum beat; don't worry George. You won't be eaten.

The Bush administration is demonizing Iran, with occasional foot-in-mouth assistance from Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and compliance of the corporate mass media. But the Iranian constitution gives Ahmadinejad little power, so ignore the man who dresses like Obama behind the curtain.

Most of the drum beats are just propaganda excuses. For example, "Iranian's have refused some IAEA inspectors, and inspections." This is an excuse that the US engineered by securing special inspections through obscure actions of the UN Security Council, which the US knew Iran could not accept. The US was then able to point to "Iran's refusal to allow IAEA inspections", thereby making Iran look unreasonable, like they're hiding something. But, just as in Iraq, Bush must have underlying motives, or reasons, for war with Iran, right?

The Reasons for Attacking Iran:

These are the reasons that I think are motivating the Bush administration.

1) Controlling Iran has always been part of the neo-con master plan that Bush has bought into. Controlling Iran, like Iraq, entails the benefits of control over natural resources, if only to create predicatability, not necessarily stealing the wealth. Control also entails brining Iran into the corporate globalization free market world view. I find it hard to believe Bush thinks they can achieve "regime change," nevertheless, control is a long-term motivation.

2) Nearer-term, Bush needs to weaken Iran. He must first have chaos in Iran before he can have control. This goal is more urgent, because of the way things have gone badly Iraq. The logic is simple:

The US can't continue to occupy Iraq, because US soldiers are getting chewed up, it's too costly, and the US public is getting restless.

The US can't leave Iraq, because Iraq is now run by Shia political parties that are friendly to Iran, and leaving now would yeild too much regional influence to Iran.

Solution? First attack and weaken Iran, THEN pull back from Iraq (leaving behind US military bases, of course). Call it "The Third Way" to resolving the Iraq problem.

3) Israel Wants It. I confess. I've bought into the perspective that, "What Israel wants, the US wants." Just look at the way Hillary Clinton and John Edwards pander to the Israeli lobby? As far as Iran goes, the message to the Israeli vote is that "Everything is on the Table." Does Israel have any reasons? That doesn't really matter, but in general, they want control too.

4) Potential Nuclear Weapons in Iran. Even if Iran is ten years away from having a nuclear weapon, that's too soon. If an attack could make that twenty years, that's a good thing. Attack them in another ten years, and reset the clock again. Keep doing this, and.... we'll, you get the idea. Preventive war is now a formal part of American miliatry strategic policy, so we might as well make use of it, right? Who's going to stop us?

The recent propaganda about Iranians providing weapons to the Iraqi insurgency is being floated as a trial balloon in this reagard. But the logic falls a little flat; Iran's Shia allys are basically in power in Iraq, and thus don't need weapons to fight the US, and Iran's enemies are the Sunni "Saddam dead ender insurgency" fighting the US. This ties into number 2) above. That is, the US doesn't want Iran to gain influence in the region. Even if Iran isn't giving weapons to the insurgency, the US doesn't want Iran currying favor with the Shia-dominated Iraqi government.

Other Thoughts on the Topic:

The Provoked Response: This is no more a "reason" than the Tonkin Gulf incident was a reason for escalation in Vietnam. That is, the US will try to provoke a response from Iran, and use that as a pretext for attacking (As if nukes ain't good enough you say). This reason hasn't yet materialized, but it will. It will be bolstered by the drum beat of demonization that provides a fertile foundation for the unsuspecting American TV watchers (I hope I'm wrong about this). It helps that they're religious fundamentalists and we're, ah'hem, not. The Iranian Supreme Leader, a title to which Bush and Cheney aspire, has offered predictions to this end: terrorism or human rights violations. So has Zbigniew Brzezinski.

I think five reasons are enough. I suppose the benefits to the defense industry lobby might be another "good reason", but I don't want to be accused of being too cynical. Testing new bunker busters is another good reason, but that's probably considered a mere side-benefit to the inside-crowd who are taking us to war in Iran. Then, there is also the mesianic reason, against which former National Security Advisor, Zignew Brzezinski, spoke out against in his February 1, 2007 testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. It's hard to tell whether this later "reason" is actually motivating the Bush people or is just part of the Bush propaganda drum beat, in this case designed to rally his radical base of christian crusaders.

Scott Ritter offers another reason. The big bully has gotten beat in Iraq. It's time for the deafeated bully to vent elsewhere.... like Iran. To this many people might say say, "We can't go into Iran. We're already stretched too thin in Iraq." We're not "going in to Iran." We're just going to bomb the bajeebers out of 'em. We've got three aircraft carrier groups over there. CNN viewers will get to see more Clintonesque cruise missile launches. No, this isn't a wag-the-dog rationale... OK, maybe that's a "side-benefit."

There are other reasons being given,
some of them, while intended to be humorous, have a sickening grain of truth to them.


Anonymous said...

Well, if Iran is supporting the insurgency, the only non-military action would be to seal the borders. You know this insurgency wouldn't have lasted as long as it has if it weren't being supported by some external source.

Frans said...


I beg to differ with you and I must say that you are a vidiot, ie that's someone who is a fool and get's his or her info from TV and believes it!

BTY, just what make you think that the US has the monopoly on terrorism?

GDAEman said...

History demonstrates that insurgencies can last a long long time without external support. E.g., they can harass with small arms hit-and-runs and acts of sabotage almost without end.

I'll grant, in Iraq, there are external sources. The insurgency is primarily associated with Sunnis, who had power under Saddam. Many people in Saudi Arabia are sympathetic to their Sunni brethren. Ironically, people from a US ally are probably the main source of resources for the insurgency, as well as foreign fighters. Shouldn't come as a surprise; Saudi Arabia is the main source of resources for al Qaida and the participants in 9/11, if you buy into the TV narrative.

Which brings me to Frans. I don't watch TV. I ask you, do you think there is a drum beat for war in Iran? If so, what are the underlying reasons? Finally, the US doesn't have a monopoly on terrorism... not sure what prompted your question. Terrorism is the tactic of the weak and desperate; classically, it is used to change state policies by turning a population against the state policy. However, in the case of the US, terrorism is used to maintain control for itself or its proxy.

Worried said...

"...US has the monopoly on terrorism?"

Monopoly is immaterial. But the "Salvadorian Option" is not immaterial; this tactic has been used repeatedly by our government to introduce chaos and destabilize a country with the end in view of assuming shadow control or placing a puppet regime in power. Something like bombing the holy mosque at Samarra was bound to touch off a powder keg whose fuse was already sputtering.

Barry said...

Anonymous said...
"Well, if Iran is supporting the insurgency, the only non-military action would be to seal the borders. You know this insurgency wouldn't have lasted as long as it has if it weren't being supported by some external source."

Consdering that the US thoughtfully didn't secure pretty much any of Saddam's weapons and ammunition stores, the insurgency has enough goodies to fight forever. Money, as has been pointed out, is probably being supplied by the Saudis.

The Shiites (i.e., the guys most connected with Iran) are being supplied by the US, in addition to whatever arms and ammo they looed.