Can the West Live with a Nuclear Iran?

By Con George-Kotzabasis

The author Dilip Hiro is thoroughly confused between Iran without a bomb, obviously his optimal position, and Iran with a bomb when on the one hand he states, and inexpressively hopes, that the National Intelligence Estimate finding is correct that Iran has “ceased working on a nuclear military program,” and on the other, when he believes that we could live with a nuclear Iran. But he doesn’t realize that to live with a nuclear Iran is to live with the widespread proliferation of nuclear weapons in the region, as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Syria, and Libya mount the horse of the nuclear race. This is where the catastrophe of astronomical dimensions lies and not in a pre-emptive attack on Iran.

He is also ‘fatefully’ pessimistic about any positive results issuing by such an attack and focuses his attention, rightly so, on its dire repercussions that could lead to a conflagration of the region. In my opinion however, he underestimates the strategic nous of the planners of such an attack that would target not only the nuclear plants of Iran, such as Natanz, but also the military, civilian and religious leadership of the country with the aim of decimating it. If the latter somehow miraculously escaped its destruction and took retaliatory action against the Americans or on any other countries of the region then such action would be calling for Iran’s total destruction.

Hardline Approach to Israel Will Defeat U.S. Strategic Interests

By Con George-Kotzabasis

Those who recommend, like Dan Kervick, a reduction of aid to Israel and an open reference to its nuclear weapons by the U.S., because of an errant and arrant announcement of the Ramat Shlomo construction plans by a subordinate Israeli authority, are political and strategic dilettantes and should abstain from delving with the complex and dangerous issues of the Middle East that are beyond their understanding.

America at this moment is losing blood and valuable resources fighting a determined and dangerous enemy, which indirectly includes Iran, having only one steadfast and unflinching ally in this fight, the state of Israel. It would be unprecedented in the annals of war that a country that was involved in war would chastise its major ally in the hope that such chastisement would appease its implacable enemies. Such recommendation should be rejected tout court for its strategic ignorance and stunning dim-wittedness. As the outcome of such proposition would be to intensify and further increase the demands of the Palestinians against the Israelis, and hence push the negotiations and peace process further away and with the great danger of turning it into a war process between the Palestinians and Israelis. And the second part of the proposition, that the U.S. should bring up the state of Israel’s nuclear weapons, and to do so in the context of the Iranian ambition to acquire nuclear weapons, will injudiciously provide, if it was adopted by the Administration, an additional excuse to the Iranians and enhance the determination of the Mullahcratic regime to acquire its nuclear arsenal. Thus the Obama administration will be totally defeated in two of its major strategic goals, i.e., to clinch a deal with the Palestinians and Israelis, and to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

With such friends as Clemons and Kervick, why would Obama need to have enemies?       

THE WAR CANNOT BE WON IF ITS COMMANDERS ARE HOSTAGES TO POLITICS

Dear readers of the Global Journal 

 I’m republishing this proposal sent to President Bush as Washington politicians were  attempting in the mid stages of the Surge to micro-manage the war.

By Con George-Kotzabasis

The following was written on April 11, 2004 and was sent to President Bush on the same date. It’s republished now, as the Bush administration is forging a new strategy for Iraq that hopefully will be victorious against the murderous insurgents.

Dear Mr. President,

The present armed insurgency, threatening to become a general insurgency against your forces in Iraq, unless its momentum is promptly nipped in the bud, of Shiites and Sunnis against the Coalition, threatens to put off balance your whole strategic project for Iraq and the Middle East in general, which would have tremendously negative effects on the war against global terror. Needless to say therefore, the stakes are infinitely high.

At the present moment these fanatic thugs are fighting your forces under the misperception that they have the “upper hand” in this confrontation. It is for this reason therefore, that any conciliatory move your Authority in Iraq will be making toward the insurgents will be perceived by them to be a sign of weakness by your side. A current example of this is the ceasefire in Fallujah, that Paul Bremer was probably compelled to declare as a result of pressures put upon him by some members of the Interim Governing Council (IGC). This was done to presumably give the opportunity to diplomatic palaver to resolve some of the issues that are contested between, in my judgement, irreconcilable opponents. These talks are bound to fail, as you will confront the hardened positions of these fanatics, which arise from their false belief that they will be bargaining from a strong position, that will be totally incompatible with your military plans against the insurgents, and therefore will be rejected by your side.

It is neither surprising nor unreasonable, that some members of the IGC have condemned your military actions in Fallujah and have opted for negotiations with the insurgents. What is unreasonable however, about the stand of the IGC – which apparently does not have political and military strategists among its members – is the futility, except as a public relations stunt of doubtful value, of these negotiations on the core issues between the belligerents, and the loss of valuable time that could be expended instead by your military commanders in putting, urgently and immediately, a stop to the momentum of the insurgency that threatens to engulf the whole country.

Paul Bremer therefore, has the responsibility to awaken these members of the IGC from their somnambulistic illusions, and spell out to them the high stakes involved, which can only be resolved by the use of major military force by the Coalition. However, despite these negative aspects of the ceasefire in Fallujah, it can be used positively by enabling women and children to evacuate the town, hence saving them from becoming collateral casualties from a future attack by your forces.

The paradigm of Vietnam has shown conclusively that your brave commanders and troops could not win a war that was politically restrained, as to the appropriate kind of weapons used against their enemies, by the hands of “micro-politicians”. In any major critical military engagement, military considerations should have the upper hand over political considerations. Certainly, the overwhelming military response of your forces against the insurgents will have local and international repercussions and will spark a “wildfire” of protests against your Administration. But despite this, the priority of the military over the political must not be modified and must prevail. It is the price that statesmanship must pay.

Moreover, what is of the utmost importance in this conflict is to inflict such a deadly blow on the insurgents in selected towns of Iraq, from which they will never be able to recover. It is not enough to capture or kill them in small numbers, but to do so in the largest number possible. Their capture or killing en masse, will have a powerful psychological effect upon other insurgents in other towns, and will irreparably breakdown their morale and their fighting spirit. To achieve this goal, you Mr. President, as Commander-in- Chief, must direct your commanders on the ground to use the weapons that would inflict this devastating blow on the insurgents. That means that incendiary bombs, and the “daisies cutter” be used as a last resort against the insurgents, whose total defeat is so pivotal to your historic project in Iraq and to the war against global terror.

Sure enough, as I said above, there will be multiple political repercussions on a world scale. But one has to be reminded that wars are won or lost by military actions not by political repercussions. It is a terrible situation to be in for a Commander-in-Chief, but the question for free, open, and civilized societies, is to be or not to be. It is by such tragic and historic burdens that your leadership and Tony Blair’s are weighed with presently. But the mantle of statesmanship falls on Churchillian shoulders.

Your turn now…