War Drums

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The drumbeat for war against Iran has begun again, led by Sen. Joe Lieberman, the independent Democrat from Connecticut, and the usual pro-Israel crowd. Lieberman seems to be under the impression that the U.S. can bomb Iran and not get into a full-fledged war.

Well, we know all about cakewalks and how they turn into long, bloody and dreary marches. We learned nothing from Vietnam, and apparently some of the people have learned nothing from Iraq, now a cakewalk war that has lasted longer than World War II, though not with the same intensity and mass.

If the senator, who seems to be one of those who loves war as long as he doesn’t have to fight it, really believes that we can attack Iran without Iranian retaliation, then he’s nave. If he knows better, he’s a liar, and to lie the American people into a second war before the other lied-into war in Iraq is even over is despicable. He should be shunned by all decent people.

I don’t see how any honest man can believe that Iran is a threat to the United States or its neighbors. Iran has not invaded anyone in the past 100 years. Iran has from the beginning insisted that its nuclear program is for peaceful energy purposes, and there has been no evidence — I repeat, no evidence — to the contrary. The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty explicitly authorizes countries to enrich uranium. In other words, Iran has not done anything illegal.

Iran has no intercontinental missiles, and the only country in the Middle East with nuclear weapons is Israel. Please note that the United States flatly refuses to endorse the idea of a nuclear-free Middle East. Iran has signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Israel has refused to sign it. Iran admits international inspectors. Israel flatly refuses to allow international inspectors. The only country in today’s Middle East with weapons of mass destruction and a history of invading and occupying other people’s countries is Israel.

As for Iran’s alleged threat to "wipe Israel off the map," that is propaganda based on a mistranslation. Nobody in Iran has ever threatened to attack Israel militarily. The accurate quotes from Iranians have been simply that Israel as a Zionist state will eventually collapse, just as the Soviet Union as a communist state did. Iranian officials have even explicitly said they have no desire or intention of attacking Israel.

You should ask yourself, What is the real motive of people who deal in lies? What is the real agenda of people who wish to paint Iran as a threat to the world? (Remember what a threat they said Iraq was?) Why, if the United States is really concerned about preventing the spread of nuclear weapons, has it steadfastly refused to endorse the idea of a nuclear-free Middle East — something Iran and the Arab countries have proposed time and again?

Finally, of course, there is the matter of deterrence. Deterrence worked against the Soviet Union’s 30,000 nuclear weapons and the means of delivering them. Anybody who says Iran would not be deterred from using a handful of nuclear weapons — assuming it even developed them — is a fool or a liar.

Furthermore, Iran would gain nothing by attacking Israel, the U.S. or Europe. Americans might disagree with how Iranians choose to run their country, but that doesn’t mean that Iran’s leaders are insane. They are, in fact, intelligent and well-educated.

As for the United States’ latest claim that Iran is supplying weapons to the Taliban, I simply don’t believe it. The U.S. government has lied and lied to the American people. It has zero credibility. Iran is a Shiite country; the Taliban are a fanatical Sunni sect. Iran volunteered its assistance during the initial American attack on Afghanistan. Why would Iran suddenly change its mind?

Charley Reese [send him mail] has been a journalist for 49 years.

© 2007 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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