In response to a worrying trend in U.S. politics, Lobe Log publishes “Hawks on Iran” every Friday. Our posts highlight militaristic commentary and confrontational policy recommendations about Iran from a variety of sources including news articles, think tanks and pundits.
- – News: Barack Obama accelerated cyberattacks on Iran’s nuclear program, the New York Times reports
– News: U.S. officials among the targets of Iran-linked assassination plots
– News: After Talks Falter, Iran Says It Won’t Halt Uranium Work
– News: Think tank publishes satellite pictures said to show Iran nuclear cleanup
– Opinion: Moving Away from War with Iran
– Opinion: Predictable Responses to the Baghdad Talks
– Opinion: Iran nuclear talks succeed just by continuing
– Opinion: The Iran-Negotiations Marathon
– Opinion: Terrorists? Us?
– Opinion: Tehran’s Noise Is All Bluster
– Watch: Insider’s Account of Iran’s Nuclear Negotiations
– Podcast: Assessing the Baghdad Nuclear Talks
– Report: Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement and relevant provisions of Security Council resolutions in the Islamic Republic of Iran Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement and relevant provisions of Security Council resolutions in the Islamic Republic of Iran
With a competent and responsible administration, we’d be very publicly drawing up a military option, putting ships in the region and consulting with Congress about our options. We might even discuss with Israel its “red lines” — and let that discussion become public. We would be justified in taking all steps needed to unleash a military option and/or to support Israel in the event of hostilities. But we don’t.
But while Rubin thumps her neoconservative chest in alleged support for Israel, the majority of Israeli defense chiefs oppose an attack on Iran. Hmmm…
Mark Dubowitz, US News: The director of the neoconservative Foundation for Defense of Democracies who has reportedly been a main architect of the Obama administration’s Iran sanctions policy advocates military strikes on the Islamic Republic:
“The last thing the president wants is an attack before the election in November—especially an Israeli attack,” says Mark Dubowitz, executive director of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.
Still, it might be possible to take out Iranian facilities where the obstinate regime is believed to be producing nuclear centrifuges, Dubowitz says.
“The centrifuge-production facilities are the key choke points for the broader program,” Dubowitz says. “If Israelis know where they are and do bomb them, a strike like that could set the program back 10 years. And I think the Israelis have a pretty good idea where they are. Those facilities would be central to any military plan.”
Another political virtue is the impact intervention would have on Iran. Ousting Tehran’s last reliable satellite regime and replacing it with a Sunni, democratic government would reassure our friends in the region that Washington is determined to stand up to Iran when necessary. Even those who oppose involvement in the Syrian conflict allow that the loss of Assad would be a blow to the Islamic republic.
Sanctions will neither stop the Iranian nuclear program nor stop the Real War. Only a change in regime can accomplish that. To that end, sanctions could be a positive force if they were combined with support for the Iranian opposition. Just ask the Revolutionary Guards how serious the resistance is: the RG just deployed an additional eight thousand soldiers—some in uniform, others in plain clothes–in the streets of Tehran.But no Western leader cares to help the Iranian opposition, even verbally. When those leaders say “no option is off the table,” they mean some day there might be a military attack against Iran. But financial and tactical assistance to the Iranian people willing to actively fight for freedom is totally off any Western strategic table;