Now that the last American combat brigades have left Iraq, the conservative commentariat is unanimous in its self-congratulation for having fought the good fight in Iraq. John Podhoretz’ column today is entitled “Barack the Neocon,” and the editors of National Review boast that ”we have transformed Iraq from a hostile, terrorist-supporting dictatorship destabilizing the region into a ramshackle democracy that is an ally in the war on terror.” They add: “Any strategy for containing Iran makes no sense unless a stable, U.S-allied Iraq is a bulwark against it.”
Sounds a bit like the Maginot Line. On the contrary: the reason that Iraq appears stable is that the Persians, who invented chess, well understand Aron Nimzovich’s maxim, “The threat is mightier than the execution.” Tehran has used its capacity to turn Iraq into a bloodbath as an instrument of blackmail against the United States: bomb our nuclear facilities, and we will turn Iraq into living hell.Ain't it wunnerful?
So. What can Iran do?
To prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, the West will have to suffer the consequences that Iran has been preparing for the better part of the decade that Washington wasted in its Mesopotamian distraction. These include civil war in Iraq, interdiction of Persian Gulf shipping through surface-to-sea missiles, rocket attacks on Israel from Lebanon and Gaza, as well as terror attacks all over the world. Lancing the boil now will be painful and messy.
The grand vulnerability of the West is fear of chaos. The grand advantage of Iran and Islamic radicals generally is their willingness to place the burden of uncertainty upon the enemy by threatening chaos.His solution: take out Iran's nuke capabilities. That'll only cost around 10 million dead in Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan.