Topic: War on Terror
Mamoud Amadinejad is back in the news: At a two-day conference in Tehran to raise money for the Hamas led government in the PA, he said Israel was an "unending and unrestrained threat" to the Islamic world. He also said that Israel was "a decaying and crumbling tree that will fall with a storm." Hannah Allam of the Inquirer reports:
"Huge pro-Palestinian posters hung throughout the conference hall, including one that showed the Israeli flag superimposed over the face of Adolph Hitler...One video showed the Star of David made of barbed wire and emanating flames."
All of this coming on the heels of this week's nuclear saber rattling and you really have to wonder if this guy isn't really working for us. He's so crazy, so belligerent, that he just makes W.'s and Israel's case for a military strike. Unfortunately, words aren't a causus belli for most of the rest of the world. Condi Rice is calling for "strong steps" in the face of Iran's defiance from the UN Security Council when it meets on April 28th, but again, the Russians and the Chinese aren't looking too likely to go along with much of anything the administration wants. Rice said that steps had to be taken to "maintain the credibility of the international community." The one little fly in the ointment is, though, is that the United States has no credibilty after our blundering in Iraq. Nice work Condi!
Despite the heated warnings from Stephen Rademaker of Iran being able to make a bomb 16 days after they get those 54,000 centrifuges spinning and Iran's bellicose posturing, the intelligence community says Iran is still a long way away. On Wednesday, the NYT reportes that, "Western nuclear analysts said...that Tehran lacked the skills, materials and equipment to make good on its immediate nuclear ambitions." The analysts called Iran's claims to rapidly construct enough centrifuges to make a bomb "exaggerated." The thinking is that they might be able to do something in 5 to 10 years and "some analysts have said it could come as late as 2020."
But then again, all the intelligence agencies and analysts were "wrong" about Saddam's WMD weren't they? Well actually, many of them were right about the mobile chemical labs and the aluminum tubes and "curveball" and Chalabi being liars etc., they just weren't listened to. I'm sure as we speak there's some enterprising ladder climbers in the DIA or the CIA saying just what Cheney & CO. want to hear. The American people this time around aren't going to be as easily convinced, though. A new poll shows that a majority don't trust W. on the Iran threat. As W. said, "There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again."