Friday, 11 July 2008

Playing A Dangerous Game

The sabres are being rattled just that bit louder over the past few days as all sides in the latest Middle East escalation have been testing and showing off their military hardware and making bellicose statements about what they will do if things get any hotter.
Iran test fires missiles to prove it can and will hit Israel if attacked while the Israeli defence minister has warned of his country's readiness to act against Iran. The third piece in the jigsaw is America which today said the US are: "sending a message to Iran that we will defend American interests and the interests of our allies."
We have been here before in the build up to the Iraq War but anyone with an ounce of sanity must hope that the bluster and posturing doesn't escalate to a level where bombs start dropping because the fallout we experienced from Iraq would be nothing compared to the chain of events following an attack on Iran's still hypothetical nuclear weapon capability.
This increasingly dangerous game is in a particularly delicate phase at the moment because of the uncertainties of the American, Iranian and Israeli leaders.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is facing an election mid-2009 which he is by no means the favourite to win as the economy continues to stagnate despite high oil prices while political scandals hovering over the head of Israeli Prime Minister Olmert are threatening either his removal from power or a snap election which he can fully expect to lose.
George Bush's time in power is almost at an end and there will be a new body in the White House come January although the time between the November election and the January inauguration could be the opportunity for America or Israel to strike, safely after the elections so the inevitable blow back will not impact on the result.
Israel and America easily have the worst record over the past 60 years for stoking up conflicts and not much caring who they launch their weapons at but as Iran have these missiles that can strike Israel, they would be totally justified in plotting in the co-ordinates of Israels 'secret' nuclear facility at Dimona in the Negev desert.


effay said...

"The sabres are being rattled..."

I think oil prices just went up.

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't the West just ignore Iran instead of rising to the bait every damn time? A simple tactic worth a try, surely.

The Fez Monkey said...

Here's my aluminum-foil-hat / conspiracy theorist take on this, and it creeps me out.

1) Iran is feeling like they've got some big balls because they know the US is impotent so long as this Iraq thing is going on.

2) In order to keep the US stuck, Iran is doing whatever they can to keep the insurgency going hotter than it would normally be.

3) Israel is posing and posturing because they have to, being the surrounded by countries that would love to squash them

4) Israel knows they can't handle everything alone, and so they're putting pressure on the US both in diplomatic ways and by their actions.

5) Israel knows if they escalate tensions it will force the US into some level of action in support due to the close relations of these two countries.

6) Iraq is sick of the US presence, and the US is sick of being in Iraq.

7) Bush can not admit that Iraq was a mistake, nor can he now talk at all about withdrawl (what with all his big talk about being brave and all).

8) The Iraqi government has officially requested that the US set a timeline for troop withdrawl.

9) In backroom shenanigans, the US and the Iraqis worked out this deal so Bushco can save face, the Iraqis can appear strong, and McCain gets a boost in the election when the end of the US occupation of Iraq becomes visible

10) Once the timeline is set, pressure will be placed on Iran and the US and Israel can start to push really hard

11) The US moves from an invasion of Iraq to an invasion of Iran.

Hey, I warned you this would be a conspiracy theory, aluminum foil hat thing.

Ook ook

annie said...

fez-being an aluminum foil hat wearer myself, i tend to agree with your observations.

funny, the man and i were called conspiracy theorists going way the start of the iraq invasion. which we believed was a sham.guess what? many of the things we believed came true. which shoots the whole conspiracy theorists-thing full of holes. it's been like imagining your worst nightmares, and watching them become real.

Noah "Nog" M. said...

I'd just wait Ahmadinejad out. The last thing we want to do is threaten war on a fellow who's only viable political position is defense.


effay said...

I third Ruth and Noah.

Lucy said...

My hope is that Olmert gets the boot soon. Bush we know is there till January and Ahmadinejan until the middle of next year and all 3 are as 'up for it' as each other. I see Israel as the key as America won't act (the blowback will be devastating and Bush has enough of a terrible legacy already), Iran won't act (always on hiding to nothing) but Israel will see it as a chance to knock out yet another enemy.

Noah "Nog" M. said...

I'll admit a slight partiality towards the liberal republic (Israel). You've got a great point here Lucy. Olmert seems to be a pretty corrupt guy. Perhaps some of the saber rattling is in his political interests to.


Lucy said...

Strangely enough nog, the only one with no political interest is Bush who only has his place in history to worry about.

Noah "Nog" M. said...

I think Bush will get what he deserves in the history books. He'll be in the big basket of dumb-mediocre leaders that nobody remembers after a few decades. So much for κλεος.