I LOVE comments. Please leave some even if they are brief half-formed ideas
that you aren't even sure you really believe. I just love comments.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, Iran


Brian McLaren has written a piece about the dangerous saber rattling concerning Iran, here.He concludes the piece with a pair of compelling questions. Here they are:
What will we [Christians] do if we wake up and find our government has attacked Iran while we were sleeping? What actions - public and private - would be appropriate?
What can we do now to decrease the possibility of that occurring? What will we wish we would have done in the weeks and months before the morning after?
Iraq is so very hard to deal with now. We have moral obligations to the people there. We have stirred up a hornets nest and created a generation of America haters. It is really hard to know what to do. Imagine if we had never invaded.

Would George Bush start a war even though he knew the public was overwhelmingly against it? Even if the facts on the table suggest that it is unwise and immoral?

5 comments:

David Johnson (Chandler, Arizona) said...

I agree that despite the ill-considered and disasterous decision to invade Iraq the United States nevertheless now has a powerful moral obligation to bear the burdens necessary to bring genunie stability and security to the people of Iraq.

Your question though asking whether the President would start a war in the face of overwhelming public opposition confuses me because it seems to ignore the history of the invasion of Iraq: public opinion overwhelmingly favored the invasion at the time it was launched and throughout the early successes in toppling Saddam Hussein's regime. Thus, despite the sabre-rattling, there seems little reason to suspect the President would launch an invasion of Iran in the face of long-standing public opposition.

Does this mean that some sort of military activity such as airstrikes against suspected nuclear facilities in Iran is out of the question? Perhaps not but then such efforts have not been the sole province of the current Administration.

JimII said...

David,

Thanks for your comments. Just for a point of clarity, I think our moral obligation to Iraq complicates the decision regarding how long and whether to stay, but I don't think it necessarily means we should stay.

You're right, we invaded Iraq with public support, but the President has remained in Iraq, vetoed SCHIP, tortured prisoners, etc. without public approval. Thus, I am less confident an invassion of Iran is out of the question. Particularly given the increasing liklihood that the Democrats will take control of the Executive and the Legislative Branches, I can see motivation to get us into Iran while they have the chance.

I hope you're right, though.

David Johnson (Chandler, Arizona) said...

"Just for a point of clarity, I think our moral obligation to Iraq complicates the decision regarding how long and whether to stay, but I don't think it necessarily means we should stay."

Agreed, but if we leave and Iraq is subsequently engulfed in chaos and humanitarian catastrophe we will not have upheld the moral obligation we assumed when we invaded.

David Johnson (Chandler, Arizona) said...

"You're right, we invaded Iraq with public support, but the President has remained in Iraq, vetoed SCHIP, tortured prisoners, etc. without public approval."

Well, that's not the entire picture, is it? He's also managed to do these things without sanction from a now Democratic-controlled Congress. And the reason the Democrats have been unwilling to sanction him is because their assessment of public opinion leaves them believing doing so will cost them at the polls in 2008.

"Thus, I am less confident an invassion of Iran is out of the question. Particularly given the increasing liklihood that the Democrats will take control of the Executive and the Legislative Branches, I can see motivation to get us into Iran while they have the chance."

I don't doubt these motivations on the part of many in the Administration but to be successful in launching a full-blown invasion of Iran they will need two things: authorization from that same Democratic-controlled Congress and support from the regular military. The latter, apparently, is not likely to be forthcoming.

How ironic will it be if what keeps us from invading Iran is not a Democratic Congress but rather military professionals in the Pentagon?

JimII said...

Well, that's not the entire picture, is it? He's also managed to do these things without sanction from a now Democratic-controlled Congress.

You don't fight the president with the majority you want, you fight the president with the majority you have. The Democratic majority has done plenty to resist the presidences immoral conduct from abandoning children to using torture. Unfortunately, they can neither impeach him nor override his veto with the numbers they have.

Now, they could shut down the government until he comes to their way of thinking. Given the fact he vetoed SCHIP for no reason other than the Congress hurt his feelings by not talking to him, I suspect the government would be shut down for a long time.

Which leads me to my next post. . .