February 27, 2021

PULLING DEFEAT FROM THE JAWS OF DEFEAT: Iran has already beaten Biden.

While the US’s leverage over Israel is diminishing, Iran’s leverage over the US grows. The US cannot achieve a peaceful and staged withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan without Iran’s permission. The Biden administration is determined to return to the Iran Deal, if only to restore the reputations of the Obama-era diplomats who negotiated it. The Iranians, in or out of a deal, know they can make a break for a nuclear weapon any time they like, that the US won’t use force, and that it would do its best to restrain Israel too.

The US is beaten in the Middle East and nothing can undo that. Iran is testing Biden, and Biden is failing the test because he cannot alter the calculus. This was a small test and Biden’s tit-for-tat response was a small failure: it changes nothing but invites Iran to further antagonize the US. If, however, Biden and his team really put their minds to it, they might turn it into a big failure.

Given enough tit from Biden and enough tat from Iran, the US can spark an all-out regional war. This will draw American forces back into the Middle East. If that happens, force in pursuit of flawed strategy will have summoned what it most fears. Yet another American president is about to pull defeat from the jaws of defeat. The quagmire deepens.

Speaking of which, everything old is new again:


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