Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Appeasing Iran

Michael Ledeen decries the US capitulation to multiparty talks with Iran, and the carrot of offering peaceful nuclear (light water reactor) technology. He notes the similarities between this deal and the apologists for Carter's Agreed Framework with the NoKors in 1994. The difference: the current US offer is the product of a Republican Administration, not a pacifistic Democrat ex-president exceeding the authority given to him by a Democrat Administration. In other words, Bush is agreeing in advance to a deal that Clinton only ratified after Carter had sandbagged him!

It is utterly fanciful to think that Iran will negotiate away their nuclear-weapons program, whatever the combination of diplomatic carrots and sticks. They have no interest whatsoever in giving away their bombs, whatever the actual status of their arsenal. For them, the only point of negotiations is to gain more time to pursue their war against us, to kill more Americans and Brits in Iraq, to mobilize more jihadis all over the region, to threaten our regional friends and allies, to enlarge their terror network throughout the world, to stuff their war chest with petrodollars, and to enlarge their arsenal.

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The political consequences of such foolishness are very hard to calculate, but it is certain that any Iranian contemplating risking his or her life on behalf of a free Iran will be discouraged at the spectacle. It is also certain that this demarche-to use a word much beloved by the diplomats—will reinforce the extremely dangerous conviction in Tehran that they are winning, and we will do nothing to threaten them. This is what makes the latest gambit so self-destructive. It will encourage the mullahs to intensify their attacks—real attacks, not merely verbal ones—on all fronts. They think we are headed out of Iraq, in abject humiliation, as a result of their terror war against us, and they will now redouble those efforts.

Would you not do the same in their position? Of course you would, and you would do it even if you were not a fanatic, you would do it if you were a student of Bismarck and Clausewitz and Sun Tzu.

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