It would be churlish not to credit Helene Cooper of the New York Times for noticing, or deducing, that it is most unlikely that this administration is going to attack Iran. I hope that someday someone will notice that we have repeatedly stated this, but for now it’s quite sufficient and most gratifying to see that Ms Cooper is there with us. To be sure, she says that the evidence is “mixed,” but once she gets into it, she’s careful and accurate, and sees no reason to believe that we will launch any military operation against the mullahs.
I have one quibble with the context in which she places the issue. She says
…Iran appears ascendant, its political and economic influence growing, its historic foes in Iraq and Afghanistan weakened, and its nuclear program continuing to move forward.
Ms Cooper’s on solid grounds concerning the nuclear program. It is decidedly moving forward, and none of the measures designed to stop it–even the new round of sanctions against Iranian banks and nuclear scientists and overseers–seem remotely up to the task. But Iran does not appear to me to be gaining strength in either Iraq or Afghanistan. On the contrary, Iran has clearly suffered a major humiliation in Iraq with the defeat of al Qaeda and the Sadrist Mahdi Army, and the growing military strength of Iraq has got to worry the mullahs a lot. They are desperately trying to intimidate Maleki into refusing a mutual defense agreement with us, and, so far at least, have failed. Utterly failed.
They had been doing better in Afghanistan, but the Taliban’s death wish has seemingly overcome sound military doctrine, and they are being killed in amazing numbers by our forces on several battlegrounds. The Iranian-supported Taliban keep trying to pull off a big military victory against us, which is just what we want. One Special Forces officer recently called it “target practice” for his guys. And now that Silvio Berlusconi either has, or soon will, tell his carabinieri that it’s ok for them to shoot real ammunition, the Taliban will have even more trouble. Those Italians are smart and brave, they will do well.
But I digress. The important point is that even the Times now recognizes the lunacy of all those claims by the likes of Seymour Hersh, and various lefty bloggers who I will not name for fear of contaminating my computer screen, that it was only a matter of hours before the big assault against Tehran was unleashed.
The short, straight line to realize how crazy this claim was/is, is to ask yourself the question, can you imagine Condi Rice and Steven Hadley approving such a thing, absent some huge smoking gun showing Iranians murdering Americans? Even the impressive quantity of evidence to that effect hasn’t been enough for these unworthies to approve simple measures of legitimate self-defense such as attacking the terrorist training camps in Iran (and its puppet regime in Syria, let’s not forget). If they won’t even do that, they certainly aren’t going to something approaching all-out war.
Hell, they won’t even support the dissidents.