Iran is teetering on a political precipice. Very soon it will fall one of two ways.
Iran will either back down or get shut down.
Theyve adopted an anti-civilization stance since their muslim-revolution in 1979. They purged themselves, fought with their neighbors, threaten the world, and sent terrorists to kill the people in many places. They were identified as a charter member of the Axis of Evil by the President of the United States. And have been sponsoring the terrorists in the Global War On Terrorism (GWOT). Even with a stack of sins that high, they werent on the edge of what is about to happen.
What put them on the brink of doom is their well-publicized effort to acquire nuclear weapons and their public declaration that they will destroy the nation of Israel. Any reasonable reader of the news should be able to deduce that Iran intends to use nuclear weapons against Israel some time after they get them. Since it appears that nothing short of national disintegration will change their minds, the only solution is to deny Iran the ability to possess nuclear weapons.
As much as a nuclear attack on America would bother us, a geographical small nation like Israel couldnt absorb the attack and expect to recover. Thus is seems that nothing short of national disintegration will prevent them from doing everything they must to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Some say it would be impossible for Israel to succeed with such a mission against Iran.
Thats what some people said prior to the successful 1981 mission against Husseins nuclear reactor in Iraq and the surprising 2006 mission against the secret nuclear reactor in Syria. While past performance is no guarantee of future results, it does suggest more truth than those who oppose freedoms war against terrorism.
Suppose Iran doesnt back down. Suppose Israel decides Iran is about to have functional nuclear weapons. Suppose no other nations shut down Iran. Then one of two things will happen.
The first possible outcome is that Israel once again pulls off the impossible. They destroy the 1000-megawatt nuclear plant at Bushehr and the other two-dozen or so suspected nuclear targets. In the process they out-think and out-fight what ever defensive actions Iran tosses at them. Standing in the rubble of extensive national damage and total embarrassment Iran would have two choices.
Choice one: Cut their losses and back down. Squeal to the UN and complain about the aggression of Israel, producing nothing more than a tongue-lashing for Israel. Israel, believing they saved their own lives, would tacitly accept the short season of talk. Eventually indigenous forces for change inside of Iran would prevail and they would have regime change.
Choice two: Iran squirts out of their borders with their diminutive airpower only to have most, if not all of it converted into smoking holes in the sand. Irans neighbors are not likely to give them free-transit of their airspace. Most of Irans neighbors are friendly enough with America to request assistance as needed. Having failed in the air, they would try to shut down the flow of oil through the Straits of Hormuz. After one or two successful attacks against merchant vessels, American air and sea power would neuter Irans ability to project power. Civil unrest at the embarrassing turn of events would most likely produce a violent regime change.
Another outcome supposes something different. Suppose Israels attack is unable to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Then Iran will most likely use their nuclear weapons on Israel. Maybe even on some of their other neighbors, but certainly against Israel.
Thanks to Jimmy Carter the world has little doubt that Israel has more than 100 nuclear weapons.
Lets suppose Irans nuclear strike on Israel is successful. Israel would have little need for their nuclear weapons after theyve been wiped off the map. Thus, they would at least give a major portion of their arsenal to Iran. Pointy end first. The parties in the streets of Irans major cities would be short-lived. The bowl of death produced by the nuclear shock-waves rebounding off the mountain ranges around Tehran would probably be studied for years by nuclear weapons experts. There would probably be little left of the near 13 million who live there now. But that would be from just one of the more than 100 weapons that would rain down on the Iranians. The small bands of survivors in the less populated areas of Iran would eventually be assimilated by their neighbors as the land became more inhabitable. The ultimate regime change.
The really ugly part of that entire scenario is that it would establish a precedent for using nuclear weapons in war. A pity for twenty-first century humanity, especially after over 60 years of investment by Americans to deter use of such destructive weapons.
But thats what happens with rogue nations are not convinced to back down.
When will the attack happen?
According to John Bolton, former American ambassador to the UN, the attack will take place between the November 4, 2008 presidential election and swearing in of whoever replaces George W. Bush on January 20, 2009. Thus George W. Bush will be in command of the American response to Israels bombing of Iran.
So is all lost?
Not yet. You might have read in the news about the American envoy going to Geneva this week for the Iran nuclear talks. It hasnt gotten as much attention as the Obama cartoon on the cover of the New Yorker or Jacksons vulgar language but its much more important than either of those.
It is completely out of step with American policy. Presidents have been impeached for less. Yet, the civilized-worlds leader is sending Williams Burns, the third highest-ranking American diplomat to Geneva. The cover story is that hes there to listen.
Of course we know that diplomats are best at talking, not listening. Is it possible that America is going to give Iran one more last chance? Will Mr. Burns say something like, Let me help you save yourself from embarrassment, pain, and national suicide. Back down or get shutdown. Will he? I hope so.
It just makes sense.