Wednesday, May 03, 2006

back to imposing consequences...

Juan Cole has a lovely smackdown of christopher hitchens. I like a good smacking of smarmy asshole so the post is fun just in watching hitchens being spanked and sent to stand in the corner, but it also leaps into a declaration of how we ain't gonna go to war with Iran.

I agree, but how's we ain't gonna do it? The assertion that we'll have to have a draft to do it seems reasonable enough, but were reasonable assumptions enough to keep up from making military mistakes, we never would have gone into Iraq. There is much to be said for the tactic of provoke or fabricate a threat and then force the hand after you have already started the conflict. It works amazingly well with excitable siblings and it seems to amount to much of bush's foreign policy. You poke and poke and poke and threaten until you can get a reaction, then use that as an excuse to fight back (or with Iraq, having failed to get the necessary reaction, 'retaliate' anyway and pretend that it was self-defense all along, batting your doey eyes at your maleable parents/constiuents, harvesting their initial sympathy and later coaxing them to contort logic to defend their original endorsement). Having folks currently less enamoured with the idea of going and beating some new brown folks up ("what's wrong with the ones we're already knocking around?") is no guarantee that the pres and his won't squeeze out just enough support or leeway to do something which makes the conflict inevitable and not on our terms.

So you ask,"What can I do? What leverage do I have with the folks making decisions?" If you are an average person like me, only so much, but you can wield what little you do have like a petulant tyrant if you want, and in cases like this, I certainly do.

Now one can complain about Iran all they want and have most of the complaints be perfectly legitimate. Their government... not so pretty, but they aren't launching any strikes on American soil anytime soon. They currently aren't a direct threat and they won't be unless we send folks over there for them to kill and give them new reasons to be vindictive with the oil supply. This being said, there aren't good reasons for invading Iran that aren't also true of a dozen other coutries around the world (if one more person points out to me that they've been hanging gay people for being gay, i'm going to scream. What? They kill gay people just like republican leaders say they wish they could and I am supposed to find them a particularly new and dispicable threat? Honey, down in my beloved AL they set your faggot ass on fire.). The point being that taking the position that we shouldn't invade Iran can be made with strength and fortitude which one might not have on other subjects. Again, not because Iran is rosy and I necessarily believe that there aren't humanitarian reasons for military intervention in some situations, but we know 1)this administration can't do anything competently 2)invading Iran would only make us less secure 3)we don't have the resources to spare on such an undertaking right now.

So again I must what little influence I wield and say with absolute certainty, that I will argue with and call whomever an idiot who calls for an invasion in Iran up and to the inexplicable point that such a military interaction occurs. After that, anyone who supported it on the front end ceases to be a person I will speak to. Period. Such is the threat for aquaintances, which isn't much of a threat since I don't generally surround myself with small-dick hawkish assholes. But for public officials, I expand my scorn and ANY public official who promotes invading Iran will not get my vote in whatever election is next. I will aggressively campaign against them and promote their opponent. I don't care if they are democrat or what the hell, and I normally shy away from litmus voting but being sick of useless wars and such and dumb folks following and enabling the folly of morons, I think this is one I am fine being rigid about. So yeah, they are still in the fishing and groundwork building stage of demonizing Iran and making them scary and aren't at the overt attack stage yet, but we've seen this song and dance before and anyone who wants to dance along can say goodbye to my political support from now until eternity.

My consequences are limited to one person and my readership is small, so I have no delusions of granduer as a political mover and shaker, but I can do what I can do and I will.


charlie q said...

The reasons to invade Iran are not the same as many other countries, not that I am advocating war with them, but they are pretty unique case that almost seem to be begging for someone to take them on. Their system of government I find all right and think the Islamic Revolution of 79 was an amazing moment in history when the underclass took back control of their country from a shah under western influence.

And I am not going to mention their anti gay stances, because that would be the pot calling the kettle black since the US is pretty criminal in its treatments of homos in places outside of cities like New York. But, Iran having nuclear technology is not the same as North Korea (which is also terrifying) because Iran is capable of launching short ragne missles at Isreal, a state that they are obsencly hostile to as of late. That they are threatening to share their nuclear technology with Sudan and bragging about this in news conferences.

I support Iran, but am finding it really hard to understand what the hell they are doing. Obviously, military action does not sit well with me. But nor does a state with an anti-semitic president a stone's throw away from Israel with nuclear capabilities.

I don't know. It's definitely messy.

charlie q said...

And really, you would have no clue that my job involves editing copy all day long from reading that. Sorry about the numerous typos, missing words, and just plain bad style.

d. earl griffin said...

Charlie baby, you can make all the typos you want here. Save the editing goodness for work and just say whatever the hell here.

About Iran, I think the fact that they are itching for a fight is precisely the reason to try everything possible to avoid having one with them. Yeah, they could strike Israel, but doing that unprovoked would put them in a world of hurt. If they suddenly started lobbing missles at Israel, everyone and their brother would be all over them in two seconds flat. If we, on the other hand, invaded them, we put them in the position of being the defending party rather than aggressor and attacking our allies, such as Israel becomes an act of self-defense rather than an outright aggressive act. Iran make poke their hardest to get someone to fight them, but they aren't going to just throw the first punch, certainly not at this time. Maybe down the road, but not now. For the time being the biggest threat they are to us is in their influence on how Iraq is reshaping.