Thursday, January 12, 2006

Iranian Nuclear Brinkmanship

Austin Bay has some solid commentary on Iran's Nuclear Brinkmanship. In the post, Austin points us to an article from Timothy Garton Ash of The Guardian:
We need to share all this information and reach a common analysis. And before we take any step in the diplomatic dance, we need to ask ourselves two questions: how will this affect the Iranian regime, and how will it affect Iranian society? The regime is complex. Ahmadinejad is the president, but not the ultimate boss. The boss of this theocratic regime is the supreme leader, Ayatollah Khameini. Without his say-so, the nuclear seals would not have been broken. But he is constrained by strong interest groups, such as the Revolutionary Guards, and by other ayatollahs, such as the president’s fudamentalist guru, Ayatollah Mohammad Taghi Mesbah-Yazdi.

But Austin reminds us:
Remember, nuclear weapons aren’t the real problem here. It’s the character, psychology, and aims of the men seeking them.

The radical Islamic fundamentalism of Iran is evident in its president. From calling for Israel to be "wiped off the map", to denying that the holocaust ever took place, to defying the U.N and pursuing nuclear weapons, Iran and its president are setting the stage for conflict.

I noted at the end of my post earlier this week that Iran seems to be asking the United States to pursue military action against it. Austin seems to agree:
The real solution is regime change in Tehran. The EU and the United States have talked about supporting the mullahs’ political opponents, but they have not walked that walk with sufficient financial aid, political support, media support and — yes, it may be necessary — weapons. Iran’s tyrants believe they can finesse diplomatic discourse and ride out a military strike. They fear they cannot quell a popular, pro-democracy rebellion.