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The Fatal Follies of Containment

June 17th, 2010 - 7:13 pm

Cliff May has an outstanding piece arguing, correctly I think, that containment will not work with a nuclear Iran. It would be too costly to maintain, involve too many countries with conflicting interests, and require us to fight an endless series of small wars, with the very fractious internal political battles that we have already seen in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Michael Anton has analyzed the costs of containment at greater length here.    And Bret Stephens does his usual thoughtful job in Commentary.

It’s grim news that geopolitical “experts” are thinking deeply about what to do after Iran gets the bomb, both because it means that they have already accepted the inevitability of Iran-with-nukes, and because they continue to skim over the basic facts about the world and the war in which we are so deeply engaged.  The debate about Iran should not revolve around nukes, but about the war Iran is waging against us right now.

There is an amazing unwillingness to grant that American soldiers are being killed every day by Iranian proxies and by Iranian fighters (mostly from the Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force), mostly in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Those killers are trained in Iran, funded by Iran, armed by Iran, and provided intelligence from Iran. They do not need nukes to kill us, but the experts obsessively focus their attention on the nuclear question.

Why do they refuse to talk about the real war? Why do they focus their attention on a problem that does not (yet) exist, rather than a terrible problem that does exist? To put the matter as brutally as possible, why don’t they — and our leaders — care about evil people who kill Americans?

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