The Orwellian crisis with Iran continues. We say to third party’s that Iran must end their nuclear weapons program. Iran says they have no nuclear weapons program. We don’t listen, we don’t communicate directly with the Iranian government, and repeat our demand to the third party’s. It reminds me of the scene in the movie Robocop, when during a test the robot cop tells a man holding a weapon to put it down. The man does so, but the robot still act like the man has the gun and after a short ten count shoots the man dead. Is anybody listening in D.C.?
The government of Iran may be lying, but now we have to negotiate access for verification under terms that are definite, and objective. If the U.S. government reserves the right to suspect Iran no matter the evidence, then we are all just wasting our time. We Americans have to get beyond the Manichean idea that we are always a priori good, and that other nations are always a priori evil and crazy if our interests clash. We should jettison Wilsonian nonsense and national paranoia, and pursue our interests and those of our allies in coordination.
The governing mechanism of Iran is spelled out in their constitution and practices. The President of Iran is simply not the top figure, the Supreme Guide is: and with him, the Guardian council. The governing figures of Iran are gangsters, and war is bad for their business of ripping off the average Iranian. The government is so unpopular with its younger citizens, their political control would be at risk in an aggressive war: or in peaceful prosperity. But isolated and sanctioned, with external forces to blame for their failures, the government gains power while they country suffers.
As a first positive step toward our goals in Iran we could send a direct representative to Iran, followed later by an Ambassador. Diplomatic relations require no value judgments; we have had and do have relations with much worse. If we desire that Iran should do a thing, we must be in contact with their leadership directly and we must speak with one clear voice. Currently we work through third parties and I suspect the message the Iranian government hears is not the one we think we are sending.
We could set aside preconceived notions and use empirical evidence. Can they actually threaten us, small and weak as they are? We bested Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, and the U.S.S.R., what purpose is served by hysteria over Iran? We could take responsibility for our actions and policies, as all nations should do. We could recognize that the CIA coup in 1952, which replaced a democratic government with a no talent, no lineage tyrant, was a mistake. We could stipulate that we recognize any states right to peacefully pursue its own interests even if we don’t like it: that is recognize rational limits to power, time and cost. We could forgo a desire to humiliate Iran, and their interests without cause. We could hear the Iranian claim to have no nuclear weapons program, and differentiate that enriching Uranium to 4% is civilian grade and only over 90% is weapons grade. And that our irrational fear will lead to bad decisions.
We could identify our actual national interests which are oil flow to us and our allies; it requires stable governance and peace. We could recognize that history preceded and supersedes the hostage taking of 1979. We could take responsibility for our action of supporting Saddam in his war of aggression against Iran and propose useful engagement. Finally we could let the Iranian government understand that we will defend our interests and that use of nuclear weapons could result in the extermination of the Iranian nation, and the relentless pursuit of the responsible figures. Then we could look to the real sources of terrorism and nuclear proliferation in the people and nation of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.
There are special interests in America driving a conflict with Iran, not because of nukes but because of Euro pricing of oil: and unstated political aims. Iran has no blue water navy, no ICBM force, no strategic bomber force, and therefore presents no credible threat to America. There is no evidence Iran has a nuclear weapons program, or mean to develop one, or proliferate nuclear knowhow. Unlike Pakistan the great proliferatior, and harborer of Taliban terrorists.
The President of Iran has said some off the wall stuff, but the spin put on it is sometimes cynically self serving. His bizarre comments regarding the Nazi industrialized mass murder during WW2is an example. Is he a run of the mill neo-Nazi holocaust denier, or unable to believe human being could do such evil? There is a difference. There are even outright fabrications in western press alleging the introduction of religious color coded uniforms, among other things. This is black propaganda.
Our government’s hysterical rhetoric over a program whose very existence is unproven is frankly unsettling. This is the same administration that was tragically wrong in all particulars about Iraq, and the same administration that has learned no lessons from Iraq. The current hysteria over Iran furthermore, works against our interests. We can’t conquer Iran, only alienate and destroy it,. The only stick we have is air power, nuclear weapons, and remote technology’s. It’s not worth using, at this juncture. We have tried hostility and manipulation for many long years; it may be past time to acknowledge error.
The amateurs, hacks, and corporate officials in the administration are the problem. I discussed Iran and America with a friend once, and found his view representative, he thought that their taking of hostages was villainous and unforgivable, but that our overthrow of their democratically elected government was just one of those things, and the Iranians should get over it. I marveled at the human minds capacity to reject evidence and hold belief. Americans seem unable to take responsibility for their political actions, though we praise the notion of it. We have no memory of our transgressions and learn nothing from our own history. America and Britain screwed Iran; no doubt about it. Interestingly it was bad for America too in the long run. But it was great for some special interests, and that’s what the American government does best, service special interests and screw the wage earner. That’s why we need a new government.