Now is the time to avoid war

America needs more than warnings about Iran – we need to wage peace

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The Obama campaign always said it wanted dialogue where Iran and its nuclear ambitions was concerned.

Apparently, that dialogue includes, "Look out!"

As Iran eagerly announces the installation of more advanced centrifuges in its uranium enrichment facilities -- and laughs off the latest U.S. statements -- the feckless Obama administration is now warning the world, through Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, of a Mideast arms race should Iran create nuclear weapons.

What is the purpose of her warning? Is Madam Secretary saying someone ought to do something? Like, someone other than the United States?

Lanny Davis, former White House counsel to Bill Clinton, said in 2008 that, "The combination of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton on the world stage is literally breathtaking!"

When Obama first tapped Mrs. Clinton to be secretary of State, the self-styled prophet John Hogue wrote, "I predict that if she accepts Barack Obama('s) offer, we will see breathtaking diplomatic feats of genius not enjoyed since Trilateral Diplomacy, Detente with the Soviet Union, peace agreements with North Vietnam and Nixon's historic visit to China." Of course, he also predicted Mrs. Clinton would be president before 2010.

Well, if Obama or Clinton have any "breathtaking diplomatic feats of genius" in their hats, it's nearly past the time to pull them out. Now is the time to ally the civilized world against the increasingly desperate and dangerous regime in Tehran.

Now is the time to wage peace.

We do hope the Obama administration is savvy enough not to pin its hopes for a peaceful resolution to Iran's belligerence on the fine folks at the United Nations. You saw how the United Nations dealt with Saddam Hussein, which is to say hardly at all. And while Russia is playing like it's warming up to sanctions, China is a holdout and a dealbreaker on the Security Council.

Nor can any rational observer believe that continued dialogue with Iran will matter a morsel. A year of it has come to naught, and has only emboldened the rulers in Iran, who smell weakness as well as the next guy. Besides, as Ayn Rand wrote many years ago, when good seeks to compromise with evil, only evil can gain.

We hope the breathtaking "dream team" in Washington has something more in mind than crying, "Look out!"

If they do, and it shows any promise of preventing a catastrophic nuclear conflagration in the Mideast -- while protecting Israel, the region's only democratic nation -- we should all support it. Now is the time to avoid war.

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Nat the Cat
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Nat the Cat 02/21/10 - 11:51 pm
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As the ACES points out, there

As the ACES points out, there has been a notable absence of "breathtaking diplomatic feats of genius," regarding foreign Policy under the Obama administration. The presence of Obama and Hillary Clinton on the World Stage has been anything but breathtaking, it has been more or less backbreaking with respect to Iran's nuclear program. After asking Iran nicely, now, Hillary is warning the World of a Nuclear Arms Race should Iran create nuclear weapons. It is "diplomatic feats of genius," such as Hillary's latest statement regarding Iran's nuclear capability that undermines the credibility of the United States in the eyes of other World leaders such as Russia and China. It is as though the United States is the only country in the World that doesn't know the truth. Israel will never allow Iran to fire a nuclear weapon. The entire charade is simply embarrassing.

johnston.cliff
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johnston.cliff 02/22/10 - 02:41 am
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While America was fighting

While America was fighting the two wars during the Bush era, (radical Islam on the foreign front and the Dems on the domestic) we seemed to be doing pretty well against the radical Islamists. The war against the Dems still seems to be unsettled one way or the other. Now that America is virtually leaderless, the radical Islamists are turning up the heat. Will Obama finally make a leadership decision? Could Obama's total lack of leadership experience be the reason it's taking him so long to get up to speed? Judging by the past year, things don't bode well for America at this point.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/22/10 - 04:57 am
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Iran is a threat to Israel

Iran is a threat to Israel and the rest of the world obviously. I beg to differ that Israel is more democratic than the new Iraq, however. Israel has problems with a large arab section of their population.

Israel was also very happy to see the demise of Saddam's Iraq as they will be with the current Iranian dictatorship. The mideast will be changed dramatically if both Iraq and Iran become democratic, theocratic states. Think about it...Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Afghanistan pro-American, Israel neutral, states. The world will be much better.

Too bad Ayn Rand didn't live to see the demise of the Soviet Union brought about by Ronald Reagan's refusal to compromise with a brutal regime that had slaughtered so many in her homeland.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 02/22/10 - 06:52 am
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Here we go with the "Be

Here we go with the "Be afraid, be VERY AFRAID" mantra. That is exactly what led this country to invade Iraq in 2003 without finishing the job in Afghanistan that it began in 2001. United States is now mired in wars in both Afghanistan and Iraq, plus it is waging both an air war and a special operations war in Pakistan.

When Iran announced that it had enriched uranium to the 20% level required to manufacture radioisotopes for medical purposes, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs let the cat out of the bag. Gibbs rejected Ahmadinejad's assertions, saying Iran had "made a series of statements that are ... based on politics not on physics." If Iran isn't able to enrich uranium to the 20% level needed to make medical isotopes, it certainly is unable to enrich uranium to the 90% level required to make a nuclear bomb.

Russia has expressed "concern" about Iran's transparency of its nuclear program, but Russia also continues to stand behind its sale of an anti-aircraft missile system to Iran. And China has stated that it continues to oppose UN sanctions on Iran. So Obama and Clinton's "good cop, bad cop" routine is not going to result in UN security council sanctions being imposed on Iran.

Yesterday, news reports stated that Israel now has drones capable of reaching Iran. Sanctions and threats of military actions ("all options remain on the table" the Obama admin asserts) is not "waging peace". Gen. Ray Odierno says that Iran is meddling in Iraq's election. It may be that U.S. interests are now backing former CIA asset Iyad Allawi as Iraq's next "strong man" in upcoming March elections because it considers Iraq's PM Nouri al-Maliki too close to Iran.

I support the Green Revolution movement in Iran and condemn the Ahmadinejad regime's human rights record. However, more sanctions and the continuing threat of using military force (even though Sec. of State Hillary Clinton says the U.S. has no intention of attacking Iran) are counterproductive measures. Americans would be surprised to learn that the Iranian opposition also supports Iran's nuclear program. A U.S. or Israeli military attack would be counterproductive in stopping Iran's nuclear program. Repeatedly Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has stated that Iran has no intention of making nuclear weapons and declares them "un-Islamic". United States would be loath to make the same mistake it did over Sadam's supposed possession of WMD.

President Obama has no more engaged with Iran than he has engaged in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The best approach to dealing with Iran is to offer them a non-aggression treaty in exchange for the lifting of sanctions and helping Iran open trade with the west. The worst approach is for President Obama to listen to fear-mongering by the likes of right-wing radicals on The Augusta Chronicle editorial staff and editorial board.

seenitB4
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seenitB4 02/22/10 - 07:00 am
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Well Good Morning John

Well Good Morning John Randolph....hope you had a nice breakfast this am... I see you are wide awake & bushy tailed..

confederate american
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confederate american 02/22/10 - 07:07 am
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Take Iran and Iraq and make

Take Iran and Iraq and make beach front property out of both of them.

confederate american
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confederate american 02/22/10 - 07:07 am
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Take Iran and Iraq and make

Take Iran and Iraq and make beach front property out of both of them.

seenitB4
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seenitB4 02/22/10 - 07:45 am
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John Randolph I don't agree

John Randolph I don't agree with most of what you post but I have to admire your staying power with all the negatives thrown your way...

orgpsych
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orgpsych 02/22/10 - 07:58 am
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JRC, it appears that we have

JRC, it appears that we have a resurgence of the monotonous drone of the right wing element. Same message over and over, hoping it sticks somewhere.

It kinda reminds me of the debates of the past few elections.

Q: Mr. Candidate, what is you view of the situation in Darfur? What will your administration do about it?

A: That's an excellent question and thank you for asking it. Before I respond, though, I'd like to talk a bit about how I plan to deal with . (Never does actually address the question asked.)

Q: Sir, what about the last question asked? Do you have an answer.

A: Yes, I guess I did step over that pone. But before I specifically address that question I'd like to talk a bit about .

orgpsych
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orgpsych 02/22/10 - 08:09 am
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It seems like there is the

It seems like there is the belief that a message repeated often enough becomes the "truth." There is precedent for this belief, especially when you can effectively silence anyone with a different viewpoint who might actually speak out (usually by shouting louder a la Rush, Beck, O'Reilly, etc.). The problem here is that the message is only going out to those who post here. Those who already believe this message have their beliefs confirmed. Those who don't already believe it are unlikely to be swayed and just as unlikely to be silenced.

On a different note, several here have responded derisively whenever Rush, Beck, etc. are mentioned. We are "reminded (you silly child)" that these are just media celebrities; commentators who do not speak for the Conservative Movement. If that is so then why did Rush headline the CPAC (leading him to be publicly touted as the unofficial head of the Republican Party) in the past and nearly every "media celebrity" take a turn at the podium at the CPAC just concluded? If that's not being a spokesperson then what is?

Notreally
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Notreally 02/22/10 - 08:20 am
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Sarah thinks we should start

Sarah thinks we should start a war with Iran *LOL* OMG just dumb.

Brad Owens
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Brad Owens 02/22/10 - 08:46 am
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John, I don't think attacking

John,

I don't think attacking Iran is in the cards. I do think that if you believe anything the junta says in Iran that you are foolish. Of course they want atomic bombs because they see it as a defensive posture against Israel, but wanting and getting are two different things.

The question is not 'will' Iran get nukes, but 'when' will they get nukes.

I don't see anyone being able to stop them and then the question of do we as another nation have the right to prevent a country, any country, from developing nukes?

I think a nuke armed Iran would be the end of Israel but I also don't support preemptive wars.

Lifting sanctions will not work, so you can forget it.

Brad

Riverman1
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Riverman1 02/22/10 - 09:02 am
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Orgpsych, if we are going to

Orgpsych, if we are going to measure decibels of commentators shouting, I'll put Olberman, Maddow, Matthews against anyone. You can get a high frequency hearing loss from them. In the words of George Bush, "Those people ain't right."

confederate american
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confederate american 02/22/10 - 09:21 am
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Brad,if you think Israel is

Brad,if you think Israel is going to set on there hands you have to be out of your mind and they are not going to ask anyones permission or should they.they will hammer iran,backed by god.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 02/22/10 - 09:34 am
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Brad, If and when Iran gets

Brad,

If and when Iran gets a nuclear bomb, the only effect will be a change in the balance of power in the Middle East. Iran will not attack Israel which has 200 nuclear weapons and could annihilate Iran. Persians including the government in control in Iran are not suicidal.

What would change is that Israel would not longer be the regional hegemonic superpower. I recall that you went ballistic, Brad, when it was announced that Iran had developed long range missiles.

President Obama has not engaged Iran. He has allowed Sec. of State Clinton to be the "bad cop" while presenting himself with an extended hand. Obama got sidetracked with health care reform which could have waited, and he is now fully occupied with the war in Afghanistan which he chose to escalate. Obama has not engaged himself in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which is the sine qua non for peace the the Middle East. Obama has spread himself too thin.

Any military attack by the U.S. or by Israel will not stop Iran's nuclear work nor will it result in regime change. I suggest that Obama make an offer to Iran which already says it is not developing nuclear weapons although it almost certainly is acquiring the technology to do so if its policies changed. Certainly Russia will have to be part of any accords. The new head of the IAEA is taking a harder line on Iran than did former IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei. Whether that is warranted or not is uncertain, but as I noted above, Russia has expressed concern about Iran's transparency.

In exchange for a pledge not to attack Iran or try to overthrow its government (there are indications that the U.S. government is involved in covert efforts to destabilize the Ahmadinehad regime), the IAEA would be given greater access to Iran's nuclear program. That would ensure that Iran is not close to possessing any nuclear weapons. Israel needs to use restraint in its rhetoric and in its actions.

Lifting sanctions and helping Iran open trade bridges to the west could do more to help alleviate legitimate international concerns that Iran does not threaten the region. It would also help the Green Movement obtain incremental improvements in human rights in Iran. Driving the Iranian government into a corner only makes them more hostile and determined to develop more powerful weapons. Calling Iranian leader's crazy does not help.

Finally I would point out that Israel, India, and Pakistan all developed nuclear weapons outside the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Iran has signed the NPT treaty but could withdraw if pushed far enough. When are we going to learn that carrots are far better than sticks in reaching our legitimate foreign policy objectives? United States needs to discover how to use its enormous reserves of soft power effectively. War talk and fear mongering do not help. The U.S. could start WWIII by attacking Iran. That is not a wise or acceptable option.

John Randolph Hardison Cain

timelord1967
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timelord1967 02/22/10 - 09:36 am
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Can we please stop the "BIG

Can we please stop the "BIG LIE" that Israel is the only democracy in the middle east? What type of government does Egypt have? How about Turkey?

I know that it is easier to just go along with what the warmongering propaganda ministers feed us on a daily basis. "War Is Peace" or "3 equals 5." We are truly living in Orwellian/Huxley times!There is hope!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4s_IUwwGq-A

chascush
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chascush 02/22/10 - 09:59 am
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Cain, you don’t understand

Cain, you don’t understand those people.
Ahmadinejad sees his main mission, as he recounted in a Nov. 16 speech in Tehran, as to “pave the path for the glorious reappearance of Imam Mahdi, may Allah hasten his reappearance.”
According to Shiites, the 12th imam disappeared as a child in the year 941
When he returns, they believe, he will reign on earth for seven years, before bringing about a final judgment and the end of the world.
Ahmadinejad is urging Iranians to prepare for the coming of the Mahdi by turning the country into a mighty and advanced Islamic society and by avoiding the corruption and excesses of the West.
All Iran is buzzing about the Mahdi, the 12th imam and the role Iran and Ahmadinejad are playing in his anticipated return.
In Iran, theologians say endtimes beliefs appeal to one-fifth of the population. And the Jamkaran mosque east of Qom, 60 miles south of Tehran, is where the link between devotees and the Mahdi is closest.
Ahmadinejad’s cabinet has given $17 million to Jamkaran.

Ahmadinejad believes Mahdi will return when the world is in total chaos and believes it his mission to hasten the return.

wyochuck
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wyochuck 02/22/10 - 10:24 am
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iran has only one oil

iran has only one oil refinery. seize it. let them walk for a while. then they shut up real quick.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 02/22/10 - 10:52 am
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chascush, are you aware that

chascush, are you aware that "Christian" Zionists such as John Hagee believe that Christ will return when Solomon's temple is rebuilt in Jerusalem? They are doing everything in their power to make this happen by backing the right-wing Likud Party in Israel. Do you know what percentage of Americans are "end-timers"? There are a bunch of right-wing evangelical Christians in the ranks of the military including in high positions in the Pentagon who believe literally in "end times" Biblical prophecy.

As I noted TWICE above, the supreme leader of Iran is not President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, but Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He said last Friday (Jan 19th) that Iran was not seeking nuclear weapons. It is not the first time he has said that. There is nothing in the NPT treaty that prevents Iran from acquiring the technology to do so, if they ever decide to change their policy. President Bush said that it was unacceptable for Iran to even possess the know how to do so, but Bush's declaration has no basis in law AFAIK.

Right now, Britain is coming to terms with the fact that its participation in the invasion of Iraq was illegal. It had no UN sanction or basis in international law. Eventually United States must face the fact that its invasion and occupation of Iraq was illegal. That is the prime reason United States could not wage total war in Iraq, and that is why there is no military victory to be had in Iraq. We have lost our moral and legal standing to declare other nations "rogue states".

On September 14, 2001 Congress passed a resolution that read as follows - "To authorize the use of United States Armed Forces against those responsible for the recent attacks launched against the United States." That meant Al Qaeda. United States had and still has the right and responsibility to pursue and bring those DIRECTLY responsible for 9/11 to justice, but not to wage war and occupy Afghanistan for 8 years 5 months and to launch almost daily air strikes in Pakistan. We have succeeded in destabilizing the region.

So you think war with Iran now that has no legal basis is a necessity or a smart decision, cashcush? What if Iran is nowhere near being able to enrich uranium to 20% much less to the 90% level required to make a bomb? What then? We will have another unjust war on our hands like we do now in Iraq plus the ongoing war in Afghanistan plus an air war and covert ground war in Pakistan.

Do you think bunker buster bombs are the solution? This will unite Iranians against a U.S. or Israeli attack and cause a conflation throughout the region. Iran is quite capable of causing extensive havoc in the region.

American warmongers need to cool their jets and think rationally before marching head-strong into another unwise, unjust, un-winnable war. United States must restrain its proxy in the region, Israel. It will not be acceptable to say "Israel did it. We had nothing to do with it." Legitimate U.S. interests in the Middle East would be highly negatively impacted, and that is an understatement.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 02/22/10 - 01:32 pm
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"War game shows how attacking

"War game shows how attacking Iran could backfire" By Warren P. Strobel | McClatchy Newspapers | Posted on Sunday, February 21, 2010
- http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2010/02/21/87061/war-game-shows-how-attacking...

johnston.cliff
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johnston.cliff 02/22/10 - 01:59 pm
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LOL orgpsych, you've got that

LOL orgpsych, you've got that PBS interpretive interview thing down pat. Reading your posts is like watching Washington Week. Good stuff. Can you do Olberman?

J.W.
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J.W. 02/22/10 - 03:25 pm
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Don't worry folks, Obama will

Don't worry folks, Obama will take care of everything! I feel so warm and comfortable with him in charge.....don' t you?

southernguy08
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southernguy08 02/22/10 - 04:17 pm
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I remember reading of then
Unpublished

I remember reading of then British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlin's visit with Hitler in 1939. He gave Hitler everything he demanded for Hitler's promise of no more invasions. Chamberlin proudly called the agreement "Peace in our time." History books will remind us all how that turned out.

imdstuf
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imdstuf 02/22/10 - 04:41 pm
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Regardless of who is in

Regardless of who is in charge, it is not a simple matter. Obviously using force could make other powerful nations take sides. Our military force is also spread thin right now I imagine. Like it or not, by invading the non-threat of Iraq we have hurt our military for when needing to face a real threat. Therefore I think Obama like Bush now has to dance around the Iran issue.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 02/22/10 - 04:50 pm
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imdstuf....Do you really

imdstuf....Do you really think Bush would handle the Iran issue like our so called president is?

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 02/22/10 - 06:46 pm
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Bush did handle Iran just

Bush did handle Iran just like Obama is now, Cobalt George. He listened to the same national security establishment that Obama does. I remember John Negroponte saying that Iran would not have the technical ability or capacity to develop nuclear weapons before the middle of this decade. An Iranian bomb is still years away, and there are indications that Iran is having technical troubles in its enrichment process. White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs said that Iran has not enriched uranium to 20% yet. It requires 90% enrichment to make a bomb. Yes, George W. Bush acted exactly like the Obama administration is acting. Obama has not really reached out to Iran with any kind of substantial offer. A mailed fist is not an outstretched hand or an offer to engage. Iran has the right to pursue a peaceful nuclear program. It was Bush's intention and it is now Obama's intention to deny Iran that right. More than 40 countries around the world now enrich their own uranium for nuclear fuel.

CobaltGeorge
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CobaltGeorge 02/22/10 - 07:00 pm
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JRHC, I have only one

JRHC, I have only one question.... Iran has the right to pursue a peaceful nuclear program just like the 40 countries around the world now enrich their own uranium for nuclear fuel. Do we just close our eyes and allow Iran to continue with their right to pursue? If not, will obama's intentions be the same that Bush would have handled it. obama's rug is beginning to have holes in it.

chascush
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chascush 02/22/10 - 07:05 pm
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Cain, there isn’t a

Cain, there isn’t a "Christian" Zionists running a country about to have an atomic bomb. You did noted the supreme leader of Iran is not President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, but Ayatollah Ali Khamenei but Khamenei is just as radical as Ahmadinejad if not more so. Yeah, I really believe him when he said that Iran was not seeking nuclear weapons. Cain, you are either badly in need of education on world affairs or if not you sound more like one of them than one of us.

TheFederalist
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TheFederalist 02/23/10 - 03:07 pm
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How do we know what Iran is

How do we know what Iran is really capable of or not? Ahmadinehad comes right out, bold as brass, as says they can refine to 20% purity. What are they not willing to admit openly? White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters recently that, "We do not believe they have the capability to enrich to the degree they say they are enriching." Wow, our intelligence agencies are in disarray, and we are currently prosecuting our own CIA agents for percieved misconduct, sending a chill throughout our entire intelligence infrastructure, and yet we scoff openly that they are lying? Some would argue that their intentions are peaceful? Hogwash. 5% purity is fine for use in reactors, and they already have that, so why the further enrichment, if not for future military use? They also do not have the capability to make the fuel rods necessary for peaceful power production. They were going to have France do their enrichment and fuel rod manufacture and still would if they had peaceful intentions. Their goal is to become a "Nuclear" nation, so that they can then threaten their neighbors and anyone else they deem unfit. I, for one, have heard enough from those that would ridicule the so called "Be afraid, be VERY AFRAID" warnings. The truth is that we have religious zealots now that would not be shy about pulling the nuclear trigger, since they would ensure their place in their heaven by eradicating the infidels. Imho, we will never have another conventional war, like in Iraq, because they know that they cannot win this type of war. Bury your head in the sand if you want, but these are the most perilous of times, and eternal vigilance is called for to prevent more terror attacks on our own soil. While I do not advocate war, I also believe in walking softly and carrying a big stick. Now, let the liberal pacifists fire away.

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