photo credit: Doug20022
I’m beginning to conclude that we should never make a political decision without first reversing our perspective of the decision and seeing how it looks. For example, on health care there is a lot of focus on what this will look like for those who want insurance but can’t get it. Only now do any politicians seem to be considering what this legislation does to those who have insurance or don’t want it.
Rep. Ron Paul does this with Afghanistan and I’d like to have a hypothetical look at Iran right now to see what it looks like.
Imagine that we are 30 years in the future and America is no longer the dominant force in the world politically or economically. Imagine that the economic power is centered in China (not a very far flung supposition) and that the military power is centered in the Middle East (less likely, but important for this exercise), specifically in Iran. In the last 30 years they have developed a military capability that makes nuclear weaponry look like child’s play. They and China, and perhaps one other nation, posses this new capability and we want it. The world at large fears the possibility of it ever being used but while most nations have no hope of acquiring it, all wish they were among the insiders looking out over the world with a feeling of being in control of their own destiny. Imagine that the United States is among that select group of nations that actually feels capable of creating this new weaponry for itself.
How would we feel when the haves (Iran, China, and anyone else on the inside of this new military capability) threaten us with sanctions and even military intervention if we try to join their club? Please keep in mind that our reaction if we are trying to acquire this with hostile intent will be almost indistinguishable from our reaction if we have some desire (openly or in secret) to use this capacity to harm another nation.
I don’t mean to suggest that I like the idea of Iran with nuclear weapons. I don’t mean to suggest that a world with no controls over nuclear capabilities is desirable. I do mean to suggest, in the strongest way possible, that threats of sanctions and/or military intervention is at least as likely to make the situation worse as it is to contain the threat that we perceive from nations such as Iran and North Korea. I do mean to point out that the use of threats such as these only makes such nations that much more anxious to join the club so that they have a chance to feel like and be treated like equals on the world stage.