Thursday, February 03, 2005


Bush Vs. The Mullahs

Is Bush swinging for the fences on Iran while retaining the "bomb-the-nukes" option as a fallback? It's starting to look that way.

As noted here before, a coup (including, best case, a popular rebellion for democracy) is probably the most feasible option for dealing with Iran, primarily cuz ... well, what else you gonna do? And, given the mad mullahs' push to obtain nuke weapons, time is running out.

Regime Change Iran postulates that Bush has begun focusing the world's attention on Iran's human rights record, which will lead to world pressure on Iran forcing change.

But the UN, the EU, the Chinese govt and many others really don't care about human rights, they just like to posture about it when convenient (note that I am talking about the organizations here, not the peoples of any countries). Have we already forgotten their record in Tibet, Darfur, Kosovo, Rwanda and elsewhere? They won't help Iranians fight for their freedom; they'll just crank up the propaganda machine in the other direction. Further, in China's case, not only is the govt trying to compete with the US as a superpower, they genuinely need more oil, regardless of where they have to get it.

Putting it all together, then , it seems a lot more likely that Bush's human rights message is aimed not at the rest of the world so much as it is at the Iranian people themselves.

Iranian presidential elections (mullah-rigged) are scheduled for June. It would be a huge step towards ending terrorism if those elections could be real; every bit as significant as what just happened in Iraq. Bush can either aid a democratic revolution in Iran or try to bomb the hundreds of hardened targets that comprise the mullahs' nuke program. If he favored the latter, he couldda done so long ago, or let the Israelis do it, so we already know it's not his first choice.

It all makes for an easy (well, it looks easy today!) prediction: lots more attention paid to Iranian human rights and the need for democracy - real democracy, no shams - there, with the intent of seeing the mullahs overthrown, either at the ballot box or by a peoples' coup. Bush is now betting on the Iranian people - who he knows don't like or want their mullahs as masters - the same way he bet on the Iraqis.

The bomb-the-nukes option will still be on the table, though, as plan B. That's why this bet is so important.

UPDATE: Just to underscore the realities of the "international community" and its response to human rights, see here.