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Thursday, May 22, 2008


Olmert calls for (U.S.) war on Iran; U.S. "scholars" say "attack could work"

Reuters reports:
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert proposed in talks with a U.S. congressional leader [Nancy Pelosi] that a naval blockade be imposed on Iran to try to curb its nuclear program, an Israeli newspaper reported Wednesday.

The prime minister's suggestions, Haaretz said, included a naval blockade of Iran using U.S. warships to limit the movement of Iranian merchant vessels.
Reuters avoids the use of the word "war," but the simple fact is that a blockade is an act of war under international law. Note that, assuming this report is true, Olmert isn't calling for Israel to initiate this war, but the U.S. How thoughtful.

Meanwhile, back on the ranch, U.S. "scholars" are preparing to issue a report which says the consequences of an actual attack on Iran might not be as bad as a lot of people think:

The standard assumption is that a military attack by the United States or Israel to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons would be disastrous for the attackers, and would threaten the stability of the entire Middle East.

But a new paper, to be published this month in the U.S. by two well-known experts on the subject, sketches a different and more complex picture. The paper is "The Last Resort," written by Patrick Clawson and Michael Eisenstadt of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. The main point, notes Dr. Clawson in an interview with Haaretz, is that the success or failure of a military attack depends on many variables, and not just the degree of damage the attack would cause.
Despite the rising drumbeat, I still do not personally believe such an attack is in the cards (though a blockade could be likely). But there is little doubt that very serious thought is going on in Washington and Jerusalem about how to carry out such an attack, and there is likewise little doubt that there are many powerful proponents of such an heinous act.

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