Monday :: Oct 16, 2006

Condi's Empty Threats

by Steve

AP photo of someone in way over her head

From our “Tilting At Windmills” file comes the empty threat today that Condi tells Iran they should pay attention to the possible naval blockade of North Korea as an indicator of what could happen to them if Tehran doesn’t dismantle its nuclear program. Please, make her stop. There is no way Tehran is going to be bullied into stopping what so far is a nuclear energy program because of a threat from Condi Rice or George W. Bush predicated on a North Korean naval blockade that the Chinese will never tolerate, no matter what Bush or Rice or Bolton think the Chinese agreed to in the Security Council resolution over the weekend. There were signs right after that vote that the Chinese had no intention of allowing what Bolton thought he “negotiated” on North Korea, despite the empty warnings from the White House that the Chinese needed to play ball here. And China confirmed just a while ago that they have no intention of interdicting shipping to North Korea.

Similarly, why should Iran pay attention to Rice’s warning that the Pyongyang sanctions are a roadmap of what will happen to Tehran, when we are a long ways from any Security Council sanctions against Iran or even a legal naval blockade? Like the North Korea case with China, there is no way Russia will allow Bush or anyone else to gain Security Council approval to blockade Iran or severely sanction them, so Bush and his few allies would have to do it themselves.

Therein lies the rub. We can speculate all we want about the “October Surprise” being either a conviction of Saddam Hussein days before the election, or an actual naval blockade of Iran by American forces, which would probably be an illegal act of war against a sovereign state in absence of UN or congressional sanction. There are suspicions that such a blockade is in the works as the Eisenhower battle group steams towards a pre-election October 21st positioning in front of the Straits of Hormuz.

At a time when their credibility is so low that they are suspected of 9/11 duplicity and complicity by eight in ten respondents, this administration would suffer a huge political sh*tstorm from trying such a brazen and obvious political stunt, not to mention what would happen to gas prices, our troops in the region, and our ability to do anything with James Baker’s recommendations. Come to think of it, Baker and Poppy would be incensed to see W blow the whole region up with such a stunt after he knew what Baker was about to recommend. So if there is any chance at all that this administration is thinking of blockading Iran between now and the time a Democratic Congress takes power in January, and given the public support for talks with Iran instead of military action, Democrats like Jane Harman and Joe Biden need to talk about Iran in a politically-preemptive fashion before the election.

Lastly, here are several more thoughts on how empty-headed and shortsighted the administration’s foreign policy has become:

1. Why does Bush think Japan would support a blockade against Iran?

2. Why does Bush think that China would support a blockade against Iran?

3. Why does Bush think that Russia would support a blockade against Iran?

4. If Iran saw such a provocation as a US battle group arriving off their shores, why wouldn’t they simply stop shipping oil and throw the world market into turmoil just before the midterm elections?

5. Moreover, in light of such a provocation, why wouldn’t Iran drag our asses to the Security Council?

Steve :: 12:54 PM :: Comments (27) :: Digg It!