If Iran gets a nuclear weapon it will immediately blow up Israel and then nuke Washington D.C., Las Vegas and Disney World.
That’s what I gathered from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and many media pundits in the U.S. I don’t care for Iran’s “Supreme Leader” Ayatollah Khamenei or the “Islamic Revolution,” but I don’t buy that Iran will nuke anyone.
Fifty years ago this week, the world was closer to ending than ever
before or since. The now defunct Soviet Union was trying to station nuclear missiles in Cuba, where they could strike American targets in a matter of minutes.
Former President John F. Kennedy ordered a blockade of Cuba in response to this, and the Soviet Union backed down. In exchange for not putting nukes in Cuba the U.S. agreed to not invade Cuba and also to pull nuclear missiles out of Turkey.
If the U.S. had attacked it would have ended hundreds of millions if not billions of lives and destroyed the world economy through nuclear attacks.
Not much is being done for the anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis. It’s not that we don’t want to remember, it’s that we live in a world of small stakes compared to the Cold War. When we talk about Iran getting nuclear weapons we imagine them blowing up Israel, which might happen if the Iranians are completely insane.
As extreme as they can be, the Iranian government is still
rational. If North Korea has nuclear weapons and hasn’t used them against South Korea yet, I don’t think Iran will use theirs either.
During the 1950s it was popular opinion that war with the USSR was inevitable, and the Soviets were almost like another species that couldn’t be reasoned with. A lot of people in the CIA, military and civilian society pushed for a preemptive strike in order to “nuke them before they nuke us.”
Kennedy and former Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev resisted this suicidal call to arms and defused the situation.
The Cold War continued, but the Soviet Union eventually buckled under its own weight. We never had to go through a horrible nuclear war to defeat the Soviet Union.
I’m not saying we should have disbanded the military and sent Khrushchev flowers, but many of the proxy wars such as in Vietnam and the support of brutal regimes in third world countries could have been handled much better. We should be applying those lessons now.
Attacking Iran would disrupt trading through the Persian Gulf, the largest source of oil in the world according to the U.S. Department of Energy, causing gas prices to spike. The entire region could become destabilized, and the population could become galvanized against the U.S. Despite popular opinion, Iran is not unified in its opinions.
There is much debate on the direction of the country in the public and in leadership. Attacking Iran would end all of that.
The idea that we need to dehumanize and destroy the enemy is false. This applies today. I can’t prove the Iranians are developing nuclear weapons, but they probably are. The reason is they are afraid of American and Israeli power.
Israel is afraid of Iran because they are hostile to Israel. This makes Israel threaten Iran. A vicious cycle develops to the point where violence breaks out, violence that obliges the U.S. to also fight. Can we afford to spill blood for a non-solution?
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