Friday, April 14, 2006

Iran Threatens The "Annihilation" of Israel

As if Iran wasn't threatening enough after acquiring enriched urranium, its President called for the destruction of Israel today:
The president of Iran again lashed out at Israel on Friday and said it was "heading toward annihilation," just days after Tehran raised fears about its nuclear activities by saying it successfully enriched uranium for the first time.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called Israel a "permanent threat" to the Middle East that will "soon" be liberated. He also appeared to again question whether the Holocaust really happened.

"Like it or not, the Zionist regime is heading toward annihilation," Ahmadinejad said at the opening of a conference in support of the Palestinians. "The Zionist regime is a rotten, dried tree that will be eliminated by one storm."

I hate to point out the obvious, but military action against Iran becomes more and more likely everyday. Those who are unwilling to accept the use of force against Iran should begin to reconsider their options.

With the rhetoric of the regime growing harsher by the day, and threat on the rise with the country's acquistion of uranium, at some point we must realize that steps must be taken to ensure the safety of our country, and this reigns especially true for Israel. The U.N. Security Council has repeatedly shown itself to be untrustworthy, and when Israel (or the United States) takes action because the Council couldn't, the U.N. will have only itself to blame.


UPDATE:

Over at The Weekly Standard, Reuehl Marc Gerecht has a very important column titled "To Bomb, Or Not To Bomb." It is a must read for the debate at hand. Key graphs:

If either Rafsanjani or Ahmadinejad were ever to follow through on their wild rhetoric against Israel with a nuclear strike--and this is certainly a possibility unprevented by either man's ethics--then the path now deemed reckless might seem, even to the dovish Europeans, in retrospect like a morally compelling course.

Deterrence theory may well work against the clerical regime, but it ought to be admitted that we have never before confronted a regime where anti-Americanism, violence, terrorism, and God's writ have been so intermarried. The Soviets in their hatreds were positively ecumenical. What we are dealing with in the Islamic Republic's ruling revolutionary elite is a politer, more refined, more cautious, vastly more mendacious version of bin Ladenism. It is best that such men not have nukes, and that we do everything in our power, including preventive military strikes, to stop this from happening.

Read the whole thing. (HT: Hugh Hewitt)

Thursday, April 13, 2006

The Moussaoui Mentality

From AP:

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) - Confessed al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui said Thursday it made his day to hear accounts of Americans' suffering from the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and he would like to see similar attacks "every day."

Taking the witness stand for the second time in his death-penalty trial Thursday, Moussaoui mocked a Navy sailor who wept on the stand as she described the death of two of her subordinates.

"I think it was disgusting for a military person" to cry, Moussaoui said of the testimony of Navy Lt. Nancy McKeown. "She is military, she should expect people at war with her to want to kill her."

Moussaoui said he had "no regret, no remorse" about the 9/11 attacks. Asked by prosecutor Rob Spencer if he would like to see it happen again, Moussaoui responded: "Every day until we get you."


There are thousands of other Moussaoui's out there. They lead insurgent efforts in Iraq. They hide in the caves of Afghanistan. They plan and they plot for their next shot at killing Americans. The are convicted and driven and show absolutely no remorse.

And if Iran acquires nuclear weapons, it is highly possible that those weapons could find their way into the hands of these types of people.

Still just want to wait it out and let the U.N. deal with the situation?

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Condi Calls For Action Against Iran

Now that the world knows that Iran has uranium enrichment capabilities, the situation has become much more serious, and Condi knows it:

Denouncing Iran's successful enrichment of uranium as unacceptable to the international community, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday the U.N. Security Council must consider "strong steps" to induce Tehran to change course.

Rice also telephoned Mohamed ElBaradei, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, to ask him to reinforce demands that Iran comply with its nonproliferation requirements when he holds talks in Tehran on Friday...

"It's time for action and that is what the secretary was expressing," Scott McClellan, the White House spokesman, said. "The president wanted to make sure that she made that very clear to all that were listening."

The Iranian situation must immediately be pushed to the forefront of our nation's discussion, and some form of action must be agreed on. A nuclear Iran is not something the United States would enjoy seeing, and the longer it goes without confronting the situation, the worse the problem will become.

The international community has shown a complete unwilligness to engage in any sort of confrontation with the Iranian regime, and we cannot rely on the U.N. to solve the problem. So far that body has done nothing but make empty threats, and weak ones at that. If we truly expect Iran to comply with the IAEA's regulations, then the duty falls upon the United States to make this happen.

Further warning will not suffice. President Ahmadinejad is as defiant as ever, and without any real threat of consequences for the actions of Iran, the country will not feel compelled in the least bit to behave differently. The obvious and very immediate suggestion is that we consider an invasion and regime change in Iran in the same we accomplished it in Iraq.

While many find this to be an unsavory suggestion, I can only stress that inaction now will mean greater action later. It will not be easy, and there will be casualties, but there is a far greater likelihood for more far-reaching casualties and suffering if we sit idle and allow Iran to go nuclear. And a nuclear Iran is a very, very bad thing for the United States.

Imagine a country ruled by Radical Islamic zealots that hates everything the west stands for, and has nuclear weapons that it can use if it so chooses. Consider the alliance that could emerge between that country and terrorist organizations such as al-Qaeda that are comprised of individuals who are so impassioned they will give up their own lives to kill innocent Americans. Obviously, the nuclear arsenal of the country in question could very easily find its way into the hands of these terrorists, at which point America is in deep trouble.

Military action against Iran begins to appear as the only appropriate solution to the dilemma. As of now, this is not what the President is advocating. Currently he favors heavy trade embargoes and sanctions to punish Iran economically, thinking that if we cripple Iran's resources the costs will be too great to attempt to go nuclear. This may or may not be the case.

In the case that it isn't, military action is the only answer left. In any case, inaction is not the answer we need. Failure to act will only worsen the problem exponentially. The bottom line is that there must be debate and dicussion in this country --right now-- about how to handle Iran, and a decision must be reached quickly.


UPDATE:

Hugh Hewitt has a very extensive and must-read post on the arguments against invading Iran. In it, he notes that the majority of the arguments being made by the left against an invasion are wrong or unfounded. The most provocative argument they have going for them is that there exists an action short of military invasion that can achieve our desired result with Iran. I think extremely harsh economic punishments have a possibility to be this action, but in the end I think Iran is just too driven to let that stop them.

To me, an invasion and regime change in Iran still remains the most viable option for keeping Iran from going nuclear. However, I continue to stress that what we need most at this moment is debate about our options in the situation, so that we may find the best possible way to keep our country safe.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Remember The Economy?

Well, it's doing quite well thus far under President Bush.

Last Friday, the Bush administration released a Labor Department report that showed that employers added 211,000 jobs in March, and the nation's unemployment rate has fallen still further, to 4.7%.

But the US economy isn't just producing jobs these days, it's also producing good jobs.

(HT: MKH)

The "Good News"

according to President Ahmadinejad. A former Iranian president is claiming that the country now has enriched uranium:
Former Iranian President Hashemi Rafsanjani said Tuesday that Iran has enriched uranium using 164 centrifuges, a major development in nuclear fuel cycle technology, news agencies reported.

Rafsanjani made the comment to the Kuwait News Agency during an interview in Tehran.

"Iran has put into operation the first unit of 164 centrifuges, has injected (uranium gas) and reached industrial production," the Kuwait News Agency quoted Rafsanjani as saying.

This seems to be just the very progression that Steyn is warning of in his column, mentioned below.

"Facing Down Iran"

is the title of Mark Steyn's latest column on Iran. Some key graphs courtesy of City Journal:

If you divide the world into geographical regions, then, Iran’s neither here nor there. But if you divide it ideologically, the mullahs are ideally positioned at the center of the various provinces of Islam—the Arabs, the Turks, the Stans, and the south Asians. Who better to unite the Muslim world under one inspiring, courageous leadership? If there’s going to be an Islamic superpower, Tehran would seem to be the obvious candidate...

Anyone who spends half an hour looking at Iranian foreign policy over the last 27 years sees five things:

1. contempt for the most basic international conventions;
2. long-reach extraterritoriality;
3. effective promotion of radical Pan-Islamism;
4. a willingness to go the extra mile for Jew-killing (unlike, say, Osama);
5. an all-but-total synchronization between rhetoric and action.

Yet the Europeans remain in denial. Iran was supposedly the Middle Eastern state they could work with. And the chancellors and foreign ministers jetted in to court the mullahs so assiduously that they’re reluctant to give up on the strategy just because a relatively peripheral figure like the, er, head of state is sounding off about Armageddon.

Read the entire article before you come up with any commentary about Iran. Steyn offers perhaps the most well-constructed and articulated rundown that I've seen of the situation we face with Iran, and his insight is virtually unmatched.

Do yourself a favor and read the whole thing.

Mainstream Conservatives On Immigration

Power Line has closed its immigration poll. Here's some of the stats, and the first graph of John's conclusion:

With nearly 13,000 votes cast, here are the results:

Strengthening control of our borders to prevent possible terrorists and criminals from entering illegally: 45% (5,843)

Erecting a wall and stricter border controls to stop non-English speaking immigrants who are not interested in assimilating: 33% (4,251)

...These results don't demand much commentary. They show overwhelming support among mainstream conservatives for the policy of "Enforcement First." The highest priority, by an overwhelming margin, is getting control of our borders. Conservatives are relatively evenly split on whether the more important purpose is to keep out terrorists or to protect our society and culture against those with no wish to assimilate, but either way, the policy preference is the same: restore the significance of our borders. There is also considerable support for a crackdown on employers, which many see as the most effective way to reduce the lure of illegal immigration.

As John goes on to mention, this is a message from the base that has to get to the GOP legislators in congress. With the mid-term elections coming up in Novemeber, now could not be a more crucial time to come out as a party with a unified immigration policy, and one that plays to what the base wants.

If winning elections is a major GOP goal --which it should be-- then adopting a stance on immigration that recognizes the views of its base voters should be non-negotiable. If Republicans are serious about winning, and if they care about national security, then they must get their arguments right about immigration, and they need to do it soon.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Not All Latinos Are Pro-Illegal Immigration

A very provocative story:
Contrary to scenes of hundreds of thousands of united Latinos marching across the country in support of immigration reform, a sizable number of the ethnic group opposes the marches and strongly objects to illegal immigration...

A 2005 survey by the Pew Hispanic Center found that Latinos in general have favorable attitudes toward immigrants and immigration.

But when it comes to illegal immigration, significant numbers have negative views of illegal immigrants.

The survey found those feelings are strongest among middle-class and middle-age U.S.-born Latinos.

This is a very important distinction to make, but it's a distinction that often goes unreported by the network media. The images we've seen this past week seem to imply a unified Latino alliance for granting an amnesty for illegal immigrants, or at least a willingness to support the rights of illegals.

But as this article seeks to point out, that universal support does not exist, especially not in the sense that the MSM seeks to portray. Take note of this, if anything it will help keep you away from an "us versus them" mentality.

Iraq Went Uranium Shopping

Christopher Hitchens has the story. Opening graphs:

In the late 1980s, the Iraqi representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency—Iraq's senior public envoy for nuclear matters, in effect—was a man named Wissam al-Zahawie. After the Kuwait war in 1991, when Rolf Ekeus arrived in Baghdad to begin the inspection and disarmament work of UNSCOM, he was greeted by Zahawie, who told him in a bitter manner that "now that you have come to take away our assets," the two men could no longer be friends. (They had known each other in earlier incarnations at the United Nations in New York.)...

In February 1999, Zahawie left his Vatican office for a few days and paid an official visit to Niger, a country known for absolutely nothing except its vast deposits of uranium ore. It was from Niger that Iraq had originally acquired uranium in 1981, as confirmed in the Duelfer Report. In order to take the Joseph Wilson view of this Baathist ambassadorial initiative, you have to be able to believe that Saddam Hussein's long-term main man on nuclear issues was in Niger to talk about something other than the obvious. Italian intelligence (which first noticed the Zahawie trip from Rome) found it difficult to take this view and alerted French intelligence (which has better contacts in West Africa and a stronger interest in nuclear questions). In due time, the French tipped off the British, who in their cousinly way conveyed the suggestive information to Washington. As everyone now knows, the disclosure appeared in watered-down and secondhand form in the president's State of the Union address in January 2003.

Read the whole thing. It has amazing background information on the entire situation.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Here Comes Trouble

Tomorrow is gearing up to be a big day for the immigration debate, at least in terms of the demonstrations:

LOS ANGELES – In Los Angeles, Eun Sook Lee will march on behalf of Korean illegal immigrants, at least 50,000, living in southern California. On Boston Common, Punam Rogers will join other Indian émigrés, as well as business clients and students from China, Germany, and Britain. In Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Ivalier Duvra will take to the streets to draw attention to Haitian newcomers who he says need refugee status.

Coming on the heels of demonstrations in several larger cities, a National Day of Action on Immigrant Rights Monday is expected to involve people in some 90 US municipalities, well above organizers' goal of 10. Described as the biggest social movement of Hispanics since the United Farm Workers of Cesar Chavez, the plans for protests, vigils, and marches include a less-visible tier of people stirred to action over American immigration policy: non-Latinos.

It truly is amazing to me how many people come out of the woodwork for these things. You'll see and hear from individuals and groups who you would not ordinarily see. And you will, of course, hear from the usual talking heads on the left as well.

But aside from this, it will also be astounding to see how many groups use the demonstrations as mere reasons to protest, whether or not it's about immigration policy. For instance, some Black Panthers and Che Guevara enthusiasts were spotted on Sunday.

However, the most intriguing --and probably predictable-- thing to watch will be the MSM coverage of all the hoop-lah. My guess is we'll hear the network heads toting on about how these demonstrations illustrate how the Democrats understand the American people's sympathies about immigration, when in reality it is just the opposite.

The public support, especially in the areas near the Mexican border, for the building of a fence is much stronger than the MSM will lead you on to believe.