Friday, September 15, 2006


Today, Charles Krauthammer looks rather unflinchingly at the costs of a military solution to the Iran problem.

He concludes that the costs are heavy and are likely to include astronomical oil prices; sending the world's economy into a "deep spiral"; the chance that Iran will activate terror cells across the world; and then, there's the diplomatic costs:
There will be massive criticism of America from around the world. Much of it is to be discounted. The Muslim street will come out again for a few days, having replenished its supply of flammable American flags most recently exhausted during the cartoon riots. Their governments will express solidarity with a fellow Muslim state, but this will be entirely hypocritical. The Arabs are terrified about the rise of a nuclear Iran and would privately rejoice in its defanging.

The Europeans will be less hypocritical because their visceral anti-Americanism trumps rational calculation. We will have done them an enormous favor by sparing them the threat of Iranian nukes, but they will vilify us nonetheless.

These are the costs. There is no denying them. However, equally undeniable is the cost of doing nothing.
There is no getting around all these unpleasant realities should it come to facing down Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Nevertheless, the most unpleasant reality of all would be for Iran and the fanatical religious leaders who run that country to have nuclear weapons to hold the world hostage to their demands. These are the same leaders who have openly expressed wiping Israel off the map. And you must ask yourself, do you think they mean what they say?

In my professional opinion, they do. Those who say that the Iranian ambitions for nuclear weapons are years away, have not factored into their equation the possibility (strong, I would say) that they have already got their hands on some weapons from North Korea or the former Soviet Union.

Frankly, their behavior is similar to the typical bully, who is smugly sure that he has the upper hand, and is just playing with you to set you up for his forthcoming physical attack.

Of all possible realities, the one suggested above would definitely be far worse if we allowed it to play itself out and did not intervene, because the ultimate cost--in lives lost, as well as the devastation and destruction-- would be far greater.

Imagine it.

Imagine Allah's heaven
It's easy if you try
A hell upon earth
Don't bother asking why
Imagine all the people
Dying for jihad...

Imagine there's no freedom
I wonder if you can
No need to think or reason
A caliphate of man
Imagine when they bring forth
Sharia in the world...

Imagine there's no Jihad
It's easy if you try
No more Islamic bombers
Who wish for you to die
Imagine every nation
with all their people free...

You may say Im a dreamer,
But it's easy don't you see,
To imagine life in freedom
And the end to tyranny.

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