Having disappeared under a rock after being exposed as frauds during Iraq on a scale matched only by the Wizard of Oz, the neo-con foreign policy lug nuts are sticking their heads out again, looking for a shadow by calling for renewing a policy that totally destroyed America’s moral, ethical and political standing in the world, especially among Moslems: Launch another pre-emptive strike in the Middle East.
T’was the night before Christmas when Dr. Alan J. Kuperman, director of the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Program at the University of Texas-Austin, penned an Op-Ed in The New York Times urging President Obama to bomb, bomb, bomb Iran in a pre-emptive strike to end its nuclear enrichment programme. Never mind that authoritative sources that actually know what they’re talking about, ranging from UN inspectors to the CIA to noted Middle East authority Dr. Juan Cole, say there’s no evidence that Iran wants anything more than to enhance its electrical generating capacity and, possibly, have a stand-by ability to make nuclear bombs in an emergency the same way Japan has such capacity. Phooey, snorts Dr. Kuperman: Drop bombs tonight, insisting “The sooner the United States takes action, the better.”
Sure, why not? The Cheney Doctrine worked so well the last time America shot itself in the foot following it so let’s try again and to hell with any repercussions.
“Iran could retaliate by aiding America’s opponents in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it does that anyway,” Dr. Kuperman writes dismissively. He’s equally dismissive of history.
Blasé About Facts
In fact, Tehran has been quietly cooperating with the US since 2001 by ensuring Afghan insurgents don’t flee into Iran and trying – unsuccessfully – to stem the flow of option out of Afghanistan. Moreover, the Islamic Republic didn’t start meddling in Iraq to assist various Shiite factions until Civil War broke out with Sunni’s during the US-tolerated ethnic cleansing of Baghdad. In any event, Sunni’s and Shiites have been fighting with each other since sometime around 700, long before there was an Iraqi or Iranian state, more than a full millennia before the US was even created and some 1,900 years before Bush charged head first into Iraq.
You’d think an academic such as Dr. Kuperman wouldn’t be quite so blasé about facts.
In what amounts to a throwaway line, Dr. Kuperman concedes that “bombing might not work” before going on to argue, essentially, “So what?”
For evidence, he reaches back 30 years to cite Israel’s 1981 attack on Iraq’s Osirak reactor. Dr. Kuperman claims it deterred Saddam Hussein from further pursuit of nuclear weapons, “a fact that eluded American intelligence until after the 2003 invasion.”
Still Cherrypicking Facts
What history books does this guy read?
Saddam Hussein didn’t rebuild Osirak because he needed money for his Army to fight a war with Iran. Then, UN sanctions effectively cut him off from funds, supplies and equipment to build any nuclear capability, civilian or military, even if he wanted to do so. Moreover, it’s been well-documented that intelligence agencies in London, Berlin and Washington knew full well that Iraq had no nuclear, chemical or biological weapons long before the 2003 invasion; it’s just that Bush and Cheney cherry-picked the information they revealed to the UN, Congress and the American people.
Indeed, just a few weeks ago, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair admitted on BBC’s Newsnight he knew in 2003 there weren’t any such horrors waiting in Baghdad when he tag-teamed with Bush to invade Iraq.
If Dr. Kuperman wants to cherry-pick facts, as his fellow neo-con’s did all during the Iraq folly, you’d think he would have learned by now to at least pick those that are true.
Not content with one bombing run, Kuperman proclaims “Iran’s atomic sites might need to be bombed more than once to persuade Tehran to abandon its pursuit of nuclear weapons.”
Tehran will just sit there and take it, of course, before crying “Uncle.” They won’t fire off a few missiles at Israel, Turkey and US bases in Iraq and Afghanistan. They won’t flood either country with arms or maybe even troops. And the Iranian dissident movement won’t collapse, supporting its nation when the US attacks.
The saddest thing about Kuperman is that the Times gave him serious space in a supposedly serious newspaper to spout the same discredited nonsense that got us into a mess in the Middle East at the same time President Obama is trying to extricate the world from the chaos unleashed the last time the neo-con war mongers had their way.
Peace on earth and all of that.