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  1.    #1  
    It appears Iran has decided that it is in it's national interest to be a nuclear power. As I see it there are several facts to be considered when regarding the Iranian nuclear situation:

    - Iran has no peaceful use for nuclear power. Considering Iranian oil and gas reserves this should be a great big duh. Iran wants a bomb.
    - Russia (and China) supports Iran for various geopolitical reasons and is unlikely to support sanctions in the U.N. Security Council.
    - Europe is not likely to seriously (read: through sanctions or force) block Iran. This is because Russia supplies almost all Europe's natural gas, and as mentioned above, Russia supports Iran. Iran is Europe's #2 choice for natural gas.
    - No sane human being can dispute that Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism.

    Bear in mind that we already have no trade or diplomatic relations with Iran. As stated above, Europe, Russia, and China will almost certainly do nothing to prevent Iran from achieving their goal of building nuclear weapons.

    My questions: What (if anything) should the U.S. do about this? Can the United States live with a nuclear armed Iran? If not, does this leave us with no alternative but a military confrontation? Do we allow Israel to do our dirty work for us?
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  2.    #2  
    Since I'm talking to myself here...


    Source

    Note the "hidden entrance to underground facilities"...

    Anyone have any thoughts on Iran? It's easy to p1ss and moan and second-guess on Iraq and our invasion. We have in Iran a situation that is potentially orders of magnitude more grave.

    For my part, I see very little chance of avoiding a military conflict in Iran. There are two scenarios I can imagine whereby the US will not be forced to confront Iran militarily:

    - An internal counter-revolution that deposes the mullahs.
    - Iran acquires a nuclear weapons capability before we are able (politically or practically) to do anything about it.

    I think now is the time to start expressing opinions on what should or should not be done. Experience tells us that it is easy for a country such as Iran to be further along on weapons programs than our intelligence agencies believe (think Iraq, pre-1991 Gulf War or Libya).
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  3. #3  
    The Israelis will nuke these guys presently. What other choice do they have?

    I'm not kidding.
  4. #4  
    This is one of those issues that concerns me greatly - given the rachetting up of the rhetoric out of the Iranian leader's mouth I currently don't see how a peaceful solution is on the horizon.
  5.    #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by 1911sforever
    The Israelis will nuke these guys presently. What other choice do they have?

    I'm not kidding.
    That's a huge concern. While it would neutralize the threat from Iran (permanently) it would create an awful lot of trouble for us. Rightly or wrongly the world would assume we were behind it.
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  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by phurth
    That's a huge concern. While it would neutralize the threat from Iran (permanently) it would create an awful lot of trouble for us. Rightly or wrongly the world would assume we were behind it.
    Yep, it'll be a big stinky sandwich all right.
  7. morrie's Avatar
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    #7  
    from what i read from the experts that i respect the majority of iranians are secular in their feelings and would like to be more european. however the power is with the conservative theocracy. the current ruler is a nut case. israel has the best intelligence service in the world, they have said that if they are ever attacked they will respond 10 fold. if it gets to that point i think israel will attack first to save their existance. they did it against iraq in the 1980's.
    morris stalk
  8. #8  
    Here is an over simplification view:

    There are very few countries that are a trigger for world war. In fact, Isreal is the only one I could really think of. Even if China attacked the US it is possible it could only involve our closest military allies (Brit and those down under) and that would be it....not likely, but it is possible.

    If Isreal was attacked and responded or they were the aggressive party, there is no doubt that we would be there. There is no doubt that Middle East nations would be there against Isreal. Then if falls to loyalities between Western Nations and financial invested interest in Middle East Nations. Many in the EU would have to choose between their loyalities of Middle East investments or traditional alliances. Russsia would have to choose as well, and truthfully I think they might decide with the finger to the wind and see which one is more likely to win in their financial favor.

    The point is, is that Isreal is a flare that attracks the world like no other nation. It is a call to protect for some. It is a call to defeat for others. It is a call to defend or take over for others due to religious beliefs. It is a moral obligation for both sides for a million different reasons.

    Isreal is the dry kindling that even a small spark could send the whole world at war in a matter of 3-4 days. And it is very possible that a nuclear spark from Iran could ignite that flame.
  9.    #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by HobbesIsReal
    Isreal is the dry kindling that even a small spark could send the whole world at war in a matter of 3-4 days. And it is very possible that a nuclear spark from Iran could ignite that flame.
    Agreed.

    Does this then mean we have to attack Iran (assuming it does not alter course) in order to avert that wider conflagration?
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  10. #10  
    Not often, but I have heard that tactic brought up in various interviews, radio & TV talk shows, etc... as a possible consideration if given the chance or opportunity to make such a choice.
  11. #11  
    Realistically-if the majority of Iranian citizens are neutral to the current government, why not stage a coup? How did we let this guy get into power anyway?

    (Im not sure that they don't have nuks already...)
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  12.    #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by t2gungho
    Realistically-if the majority of Iranian citizens are neutral to the current government, why not stage a coup? How did we let this guy get into power anyway?
    Neutral and actively oppose are two very different things, of course.
    (Im not sure that they don't have nuks already...)
    There's a danger of that, of course, but creating a weapon and proving you can detonante it are also two different things - at least they haven't done that yet.
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  13. #13  
    Unfortunately, if things progress along the lines that people think they will, some type of action will be needed to stop it. Who would be the ones to do that? Either Isreal, or the US (maybe both, and as Hobbes said, probably with a small handfull of close allies.)

    We know from the past the UN will do squat. They'll keep passing their meaningless resolutions time after time. "No wait, this time we're serious..." followed by "We're warning you, don't do it..." followed by "We're not bluffing pal, just you wait and see..." ad infinitum.

    We also know that most of Europe would rather wake up under Wahabiism or Islamic rule than do anything about it.

    So who does that leave?

    The thought of Iran having nukes while we have 150,000 troops in theatre, is not appealing in the least.
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  14. #14  
    Well, thank Allah for the Iranians!!

    Iran Announces Conference on Holocaust

    TEHRAN, Iran -
    Iran, whose president has denied the Holocaust, said Sunday it would hold a conference to examine the scientific evidence concerning Nazi Germany's extermination of 6 million Jews.
    This should be fair and balanced!
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  15. #15  
    I have every confidence that this will fix the problem:
    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/tm_obje...name_page.html
  16.    #16  
    Saddam Hussein at least had self-preservation impulses that could be played upon and used in negotiations. Ahmadinejad is a complete nutcase. One suspects the vaporization of millions might be a price he'd be willing to pay to pave the way for the return of the "messiah".
    'Divine mission' driving Iran's new leader
    By Anton La Guardia
    (Filed: 14/01/2006)

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main...4/ixworld.html


    As Iran rushes towards confrontation with the world over its nuclear programme, the question uppermost in the mind of western leaders is "What is moving its President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to such recklessness?"...

    ...When an aircraft crashed in Teheran last month, killing 108 people, Mr Ahmadinejad promised an investigation. But he also thanked the dead, saying: "What is important is that they have shown the way to martyrdom which we must follow."

    The most remarkable aspect of Mr Ahmadinejad's piety is his devotion to the Hidden Imam, the Messiah-like figure of Shia Islam, and the president's belief that his government must prepare the country for his return...

    ...The speech ended with the messianic appeal to God to "hasten the emergence of your last repository, the Promised One, that perfect and pure human being, the one that will fill this world with justice and peace".

    In a video distributed by an Iranian web site in November, Mr Ahmadinejad described how one of his Iranian colleagues had claimed to have seen a glow of light around the president as he began his speech to the UN.

    "I felt it myself too," Mr Ahmadinejad recounts. "I felt that all of a sudden the atmosphere changed there.
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  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by phurth
    Saddam Hussein at least had self-preservation impulses that could be played upon and used in negotiations. Ahmadinejad is a complete nutcase. One suspects the vaporization of millions might be a price he'd be willing to pay to pave the way for the return of the "messiah".
    I agree...in a wierd way he may have been more rational.
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  18. #18  
    I am not sure more rational or not....but less fanatical.
  19. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by phurth
    Agreed.

    Does this then mean we have to attack Iran (assuming it does not alter course) in order to avert that wider conflagration?
    You would have to move out of Iraq first, because an attack on Iran would make the Shiite majority in Iraq close ranks with Iran immediately. Full-blown civil war in Iraq would be a certainty.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by t2gungho
    Realistically-if the majority of Iranian citizens are neutral to the current government, why not stage a coup?
    The US did that already, in fact, this and the support of the dictatorial Shah regime lead to the Islamistic regime taking power:

    In 1953 Iran's elected prime minister Mohammad Mosaddeq, was removed from power in a complex plot orchestrated by British and US intelligence agencies (dubbed "Operation Ajax"). The operation was conducted following the Prime-Minister's nationalization of the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company. It reinstated the Iranian monarchy against the people's will, handing power back to former Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

    Following Mosaddeq's fall, Pahlavi grew increasingly dictatorial. With strong support from the USA and the UK, the Shah further modernized Iranian industry but crushed civil liberties. His autocratic rule, under which systematic torture and other human rights violations were known to occur, led to the Iranian revolution and overthrow of his regime in 1979. After more than a year of political struggle between a variety of different groups, an Islamic republic was established under the Ayatollah Khomeini by a revolution. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran#History
    How did we let this guy get into power anyway?
    He was elected in a democratic election, remember? There were more moderate candidates, but Ahmadinejad got the majority.

    I don't think Iran should get the possibilty of building a bomb, but the military options seem highly limited when considering what would follow afterwards in the Middle East. Without the occupation of Iraq, the military threat would have been much more credible. Everybody knows US troops are already spread thin in Iraq, and that they are very vulnerable there.

    Plus, the occupation and things like the torture scandals, Guantanamo, etc. have increased radicalisation in the Middle East a lot, so another attack on a Muslim country would create an even worse reaction in countries like Pakistan, Syria, Jordania, etc. Pakistan's Musharraf would probably lose power, and Islamistic powers could take over there, too - and Pakistan already has nuclear weapons...

    Military strikes are an option if everything else fails. Iran is a poor country which e.g. cannot even produce enough gasoline for its own needs. There is a chance that external pressure (economic embargoes etc.) will lead to the removal of Achmadinejad and the return to power of more moderate Iranian politicians.

    Besides, I doubt Russia or China have an interest in Iran becoming a nuclear power.
    Last edited by clulup; 01/16/2006 at 05:33 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
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