Neo-Con Foreign Policy GroupThink

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

From a recent Pat Buchanan article:

Mitt says that if elected he will move carriers into the Persian Gulf and "prepare for war." Newt is even more hawkish. America should continue "taking out" Iran's nuclear scientists -- i.e., assassinating them -- but military action will probably be needed.

For the retired head of Mossad, Meir Dagan, calls attacking Iran "the stupidest thing I have ever heard of."

I have a difficult time believing that we are actually talking about action against Iran. It is like a bad dream. I can only hope it is pre-election saber-rattling. But even worse than a bad dream, it comes with a strong sense of déjà vu: Early in 2007 I was listening to Michael Savage. That's right, I was listening to Michael Savage. As a trade analyst and (now) political science teacher, I have always felt it imperative to stay aware of public discourse and the opinion leaders that influence perception. To continue, I was disturbed at the foreign policy position he was advocating toward Iran and the next day I wrote the following on a blog: wasn't so much that I disagreed with it (because I don't have a problem listening to things I disagree with), the problem is that the information was so bad, almost insane. He was talking to John Hagee, a famous TV prophecy guy. He said 70% of Iran was dissatisfied with their government (or some statistic like that) and that the US should invade Iran and liberate that 70%. That's one of the most insane things I've ever heard in my life.

Iraq has 18 million people, its demographics a hodgepodge created by post colonial nation-building, and it is largely flat. And how is our liberation of that country proceeding? Iran on the other hand has 70 million, is a 3000 year old civilization, and is one of the most mountainous countries of the world. Do we really have to wonder how that would turn out? Are we ready for the increase in oil prices that will occur after Iran retaliates by cutting off its oil supply? What kind of cost-benefit analysis are the neo-cons using?


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I teach them all the good I can, and recommend them to others from whom I think they will get some moral benefit. And the treasures that the wise men of old have left us in their writings I open and explore with my friends. If we come on any good thing, we extract it, and we set much store on being useful to one another. - Socrates, Memorabilia
What we maintain is that in none of the problems of life can men afford to lose sight of the storehouse bequeathed to them by the ancients. In the complexus of everything which differentiates man from the brute creation, the voice of antiquity must be heard...

-H. Browne, quoted in "Classics and Citizenship" The Classical Quarterly, 1920