Monday, June 30, 2008

Military Action in Iran: The Role of the United States and Israel

Seymour Hersh has written a piece for the New Yorker that claims the United States has increased covert military operations inside Iran. After a request from President Bush, Congressional leaders approved funding of an escalation in covert operations against Iran that would work to destabilize the Iranian regime. This funding, which was approved by leaders of both parties, allows for up to $400 million dollars to be spent on actions such as spying on nuclear facilities and support for various dissident groups.

The Democratic Party has continually denounced this administration for its stance on Iraq and claims that they will not be duped by this Administration again, yet top leaders of the party are joining with Republicans in authorizing measures against Iran that seem to circumvent any diplomatic measures. As Hersh states:

Although some legislators were troubled by aspects of the Finding, and “there was a significant amount of high-level discussion” about it, according to the source familiar with it, the funding for the escalation was approved. In other words, some members of the Democratic leadership-Congress has been under Democratic control since the 2006 elections-were willing, in secret, to go along with the Administration in expanding covert activities directed at Iran, while the Party’s presumptive candidate for President, Barack Obama, has said that he favors direct talks and diplomacy

Hersh goes on to mention that the timing of this request, made by President Bush, coincides with a period of time AFTER the Administration was told by the National Intelligence Estimate that Iran had halted its nuclear program in 2003. The Administration has continually downplayed the findings of the NIE and to this day, maintains an Iranian threat against their neighbors.

This ties in with two other recent developments:

1. The recent report by the New York Times that Israel has conducted a military training exercise believed to simulate an airstrike on Iranian targets.

2. John Bolton, the former American Ambassador to the United Nations, has stated that Israel will attack Iran before the next President of the United States is sworn in.

As information continues to gather regarding the so-called "Iranian Threat" it is becoming more and more clear that the United States may choose to play a complicit yet indirect role in any military action against Iran. An Israeli attack on Iran would not only accomplish an objective friendly to insiders in Washington, but would allow for Washington to avoid direct military confrontation. An action by Israel would not remove blame from the United States as the U.S. would be complicit in such actions, but would serve to further the interests of two countries that have an alliance of strategic regional objectives. Iran has threatened to retaliate against any attack and I need not outline the potential consequences of such actions only to say that any military action against Iran would have major and catastrophic results in the region.

1 comment:

The Commentator said...

Thuggish and brutal as they are and their aims to get the bomb notwithstanding, I must admit I'm perplexed with notion of attacking Iran. Mind you, they're not going in to nation-build. Iran's population is ripe for democracy.