Okay, someone needs to take Bush aside and explain to him that he can’t start a new war until he’s finished the one he’s already got going. According to the Times in London (h/t to QuakerDave), the Pentagon has plans for “massive airstrikes against 1,200 targets in Iran, designed to annihilate the Iranians’ military capability in three days.” The article further notes:
Alexis Debat, director of terrorism and national security at the Nixon Center, said last week that US military planners were not preparing for “pinprick strikes” against Iran’s nuclear facilities. “They’re about taking out the entire Iranian military,” he said.
Now, I realize that the Pentagon has all sorts of plans, for all sorts of possible scenarios. That is what they do. They try to develop plans for every plausible “what if” scenario so that if the worst happens and we need to mount some sort of military operation somewhere in the world, we’re not just doing it by the seat of our pants.
But this is really disturbing (as if Bush’s saber rattling with respect to Iran weren’t bad enough in itself). If the Pentagon has these plans to basically wipe out Iran’s entire military with airstrikes in a three day timeframe, and if people who are in a position to know about it are actually talking to the press about it, it suggests to me that this might well be our brilliant president’s plan — just have a massive bombing attack to wipe out their military and nuclear capabilities, and say, “Okay, that was fun. Have fun rebuilding your military and infrastructure for the next decade, Iran. We’ve got to get back to Iraq now. See ya!”
And hey, by the way, exactly how do they think they can accomplish all this in three days, with our military already stretched too thin? I know our Air Force can do some pretty amazing things, but Iran is several times the size of Iraq, with almost three times the population, a bigger military, and more resources. I really don’t see us taking out their entire military, along with their nuclear program, in three days using conventional weapons.
That suggests that the Pentagon plans — assuming they really do exist, of course — involve the use of nuclear weapons.
I really don’t want to contemplate the possibility of using nuclear weapons in a preemptive attack, particularly since the last preemptive war initiated by our president was sold to the American public (and the rest of the world) using manipulated intelligence of dubious provenance. Frankly, at this point, the president has no real credibility left. There is quite simply no way for me or anyone else not actually working in the intelligence field to know whether the magnitude of the threat posed by Iran is as great as the president claims. Therefore, the idea of using nuclear weapons in an attack against Iran, based upon any statement by this president about the threat that country poses, does not bear serious consideration by any thinking person.
Unfortunately, we don’t have a thinking person making the final decision on this matter. We just have Dubya.
Neither do I like to contemplate the likely reaction of other nations of the world if Bush were to launch such an attack. Bush has already done more to alienate our allies than any president in recent history, destroying international goodwill built up over decades by preceding administrations. Any first strike against an enemy that is not literally threatening to overrun us in the immediate near future using nuclear weapons would likely be viewed by other nations of the world as sufficient justification to launch a war – possibly a nuclear war – against us, here, on our own soil.
And I really, really don’t want to contemplate that.
Thus I will simply close by saying once again that I really think that Bush and Cheney ought to be impeached.