Remember how a couple of weeks ago, the story was that the Bush administration does not trust any future administration to 'deal with'
They certainly haven’t bothered to report on the hostilities we have been engaging in with
On two borders, the
And now we have Dick Cheney, lunging for the end of the chain, snarling, foaming at the mouth and demanding more war.
Cheney, who's long been skeptical of diplomacy with Iran, argued for military action if hard new evidence emerges of Iran's complicity in supporting anti-American forces in Iraq; for example, catching a truckload of fighters or weapons crossing into Iraq from Iran, one official said.
The two officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to talk publicly about internal government deliberations.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice opposes this idea, the officials said. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has stated publicly that "we think we can handle this inside the borders of
Lea Anne McBride, a Cheney spokeswoman, said only that "the vice president is right where the president is" on
Bush left no doubt at his news conference that he intended to get tough with
"One of the main reasons that I asked Ambassador Crocker to meet with Iranians inside Iraq was to send the message that there will be consequences for . . . people transporting, delivering EFPs, highly sophisticated IEDs (improvised explosive devices), that kill Americans in Iraq," he said.
He also appeared to call on the Iranian people to change their government.
"My message to the Iranian people is, you can do better than this current government," he said. "You don't have to be isolated. You don't have to be in a position where you can't realize your full economic potential."
The Bush administration has launched what appears to be a coordinated campaign to pin more of
Those who are frothing at the mouth, all hot and bothered to get their war on with
I am going to explain a few things in simple enough terms for even a conservative to understand, like why
- Iranians have a strong national identity that is founded in common history; unlike Iraq, which was cobbled together from the remnants of the Ottoman Empire, and occupied by Britain from 1917 to 1958.
has existed for 90 years, and been occupied by “liberators” for 45 of them. Iraq Iranis four times the size of , with terrain that ranges from placid coastline to rugged mountains. Iraq
- The average male Iranian is just under 25 years of age.
Iranhas as many males between 15-64 as has total population Iraq will not fall simply because a figurehead might be deposed. Iran will not fall so long as one Mullah remains alive anywhere in the country. Iran has a relatively modern military that has not been decimated by two decades of war and sanctions. Iran has the ability to shut down the passage of oil tankers, and send the price of oil to triple-digit per barrel prices. Iran
In post revolutionary
When the average citizen is younger than the revolution, the revolution is over. Maybe not officially, but de facto. Birth rates are down from a post-revolution high of over 5 per woman to just under 2. The pig is passing through the snake, but it will be a discernible bulge for the foreseeable future. The average Iranian is around 25, in a population of over 65 million, while the Islamic revolution was 28 years ago come November.
We need to be engaging in diplomacy, even if it takes six months to decide ‘what will be the design and color of the peace table?’ We should also be engaging the country economically. They have a monolithic, one-dimensional energy economy. The Mullahs control the population by controlling the economy. Economic engagement would be far more effective than military engagement. (And no, I don’t mean by wrecking it – I mean by encouraging prosperity.)
[*Note: The population of Iran has been corrected. Thanks to astute commenter Ben Cronin at WTWC for pointing out my quite inexcusable error.]