With tensions between Tehran and the international community becoming more and more pronounced, one would think that Iran’s leadership would be doing all it can to allay the fears that are growing by the day. After all, a united world against Iran will do nothing to help its long term goals of self-sufficiency.
While no one really has the right to prevent any nation from acquiring the technology that we already have, including Iran, we do have an overriding fundamental responsibility to our children and to their children to do whatever is necessary to prevent an evil regime from acquiring the means to wipe them out. Unfortunately for us, we are now up against a regime that states unequivocally that this is their long term goal.
If the leadership of Iran was simply interested in acquiring a clean, dependable source of power from nuclear physics, I don’t see any nation in the world standing in their way. In fact, I would be willing to bet that there would be nations lined up to assist in their quest. After all, which of us doesn’t want to see more clean power being used around the globe?
Nuclear power, for the most part, is perfectly safe. There is, however, a very fine line between what a nation must do to obtain and maintain a nuclear energy program and how long that nation can make the transition from power usage to weapons manufacture. That is where the international community fears Iran is headed in a deliberate and in-your-face attempt to antagonize the rest of the world.
Iran’s supreme leader, Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and his psychotic president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have seemingly gone out of their way over the last 12 months to exacerbate the issue of Iran’s drive to become an unstoppable aggressor state and have done everything in their power, including the use of escalating rhetoric, to inflame the international community, especially the United States.
President Ahmadinejad’s seemingly irrational tirades have made him look the part of a madman, but I fear that many are underestimating his ability to rally his people and his ability to constantly keep the West off guard. He is engaged in a deliberate campaign of fear, rhetoric, and calculative misinformation mixed in with speculation and rumour. This is resulting in the same uncertainty that was pivotal in keeping the Allies off balance during the beginning of World War II.
Not unlike the very charismatic figure behind Germany’s rapid rise as a military juggernaut in the 1930’s, Ahmadinejad has the requisite charm to capture the attention and the hearts of Iran’s massive youth population. His passions for the Muslim state resonate with many of Iran’s young minds, and visions of grandeur are what Mahmoud is able to dispense almost effortlessly. As well, he is a figure who can portray himself as a crusader for his country, one able to stand up to the ‘evil oppressors’ and deliver some long overdue national dignity and pride, and you have the makings of a very powerful leader. Add to that his seemingly mental instabilities and combine them with his political savvy and brilliance, and he becomes not only powerful but a very scary character.
It seems that after so much propaganda, mostly on Ahmadinejad’s part, the West and most of the international community is stuck in the same old machinations of procedure. One’s that, while designed to deal with situations such as these, will only serve to hinder the international community from taking the steps that are needed right now to prevent this maniac from acquiring nuclear weapons.
Iran is in the process of building its naval forces, and while it is eons away from ever being able to project any real naval threat to most of the world, it could realize the capabilities to cripple the flow of oil carrying ships through the Strait of Hormuz. This in turn would effectively cripple the Western economy.
WHAT HAS GOT US TO THIS POINT?
As stated earlier, no nation has the right to tell another what technology it can obtain or discover, unless that state is a dire security risk to themselves or to other peaceful nations. Let’s have a look at some of the quotes that have originated from either Iran’s Supreme Leader or its president in the last year:
April 14, 2006, in Tehran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei stated that the era of Muslim awakening in the Middle East had arrived. He went on to say that “jihad” was not only taking place in “occupied Palestine and Qods (Jerusalem)” but all over the “Islamic world”.
April 14, 2006, in Tehran, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called Israel a “rotten tree” and said that it would be “annihilated with one storm.” (Is this a veiled reference to nuclear capabilities?) He further stated that “Israel cannot continue to exist in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility without threats and aggression.”
February 11, 2006, Ahmadinejad stated “We ask the West to remove what they created sixty years ago and if they do not listen to our recommendations, then the Palestinian nation and other nations will eventually do this for them. Do the removal of Israel before it is too late and save yourself from the fury of regional nations.”
December 14, 2005, Mahmoud: “The West has given more significance to the myth of the genocide of the Jews, even more significant than God, religion, and the prophets,”
October 26, 2005, Ahmadinejad declared during a conference entitled “The World Without Zionism”: “There is no doubt that the new wave (of attacks) in Palestine will soon wipe off this disgraceful blot (Israel) from the face of the Islamic world.” Also, “As the Imam said, Israel must be wiped off the map,”
Ahmadinejad said that someone present at the UN told him that a light surrounded him while he was delivering his speech to the General Assembly. The Iranian president added that he also sensed it.
WHAT TO DO
What is the world to do about this situation, and does immediate action seem warranted? I guess the only real answer to that is by looking back through history and taking into account some of the horrible suffering that men, women, and children have had to endure because of the failure of the sane world to step up to do what needed to be done. Too many times our ignorant self-interests, or simply our self-loathing has not allowed us to see where the road that we were on would lead to.
Today, there is no such excuse, for we can see where the road has led us in the past. While diplomacy is always the preferable option, we must not back away from our willingness to impose the sanctions and will of the entire planet on those who are hell bent on thumbing their noses at the rest of us. Stubbornness and posturing are one thing, (two actually), but when you openly promise the demise and destruction of others, then you should simply and succinctly be stopped.
Many have stated that the United States is simply not powerful enough to take on Iran while in the midst of the Iraq war. That is most certainly true, especially given the lack of faith that the American media seems intent on publicizing and propagating. The American public is divided far too much at this point to stomach another confrontation and it also lacks the moral fortitude needed to undergo a serious and far-reaching campaign such as going into Iran would entail.
Having said that, should the rest of the international community not offer up the military and/or diplomatic means to blow this fuse out, then I am afraid that we may one day find that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was not bluffing, nor was he sincere when he suggested that Iran was only interested in nuclear power.
As we are all too aware, man has always seemed to fail to prevent the worst from happening. As before, only time will tell if we will truly ever learn from our past mistakes.