Lots of Choices. All of Them Bad. (Israel vs Iran Issue.)

I know I'm veering off into dangerous territory here. It seems that an internet-based, open discussion of this issue is impossible without the thread disintegrating into anti-semitic/anti-muslim rhetoric. However, I'm trying to make this place different so I suppose this thread will be a good measure of whether or not I am succeeding so far.

You see, I think that most of us are thoughtful and literate people. Additionally, many on this site have a libertarian bent and are able to unemotionally see many facets of each issue. We all spend quite a bit of time on the internet, reading and researching, hoping to stay informed and, thus, prepare accordingly. So here are the questions I have for you:

  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for peaceful economic and medical purposes?
  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for military self-defense purposes?
  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for hostile, aggressive purposes?

After you've answered "yes" to one of the above, please comment below on why you believe as you do and what you think the solution to the current crisis is. Also, regardless of your solution, please include in your comment your prediction as to how this will all play out in the coming months.

Again, please avoid using divisive terms such as "neo-con", "hebe", "raghead" and "zionist". That shit gets us nowhere. Events are going to play out in the Middle East regardless of our strongly-held opinions, therefore, in this community, we must seek to help each other navigate this mess and not puritanically drive each other away through the use of inflammatory rhetoric.

OK, have at it. Though I very much look forward to reading your opinions, I will not hesitate to withdraw this thread just as quickly as it appeared if I find that it was counter-productive.  TF

138 Comments

GoldMania3000's picture

My Issue

My Issue is not what Iran does or doesn't do. My issue is that the US of A has budded into everyone's business for so long.  I'm an American (my whole life) and who do we think we are to get involved with telling everyone what they can and can't do.  Is Iran dangerous, yes, probably just as dangerous as the USA, China, North Korea, et al.  Why is Iran trying to get the weapon in the first place.   We are in the 21st century and there's no way that we can stop everyone from having the weapon, the technology is already out there and if you have the $ you can get a nuke..small one, but a nuke. 

We tried to play bully for too long and everyone around the world is tired of the US of A playing bully.  Who are we to say who should have  a nuke and who shouldn't? I like Richard maybury's POV on this topic.  we should pull all our troops home, apologies for the mess we have made ....would that stop IRAN from having a NUKE..who knows.  But this is not about IRAN having a nuke or note..it's about the US of A and our great country getting involved with every ones shits..

Do all you have agreed to and do not encroach on another person or their property.  We never do all that we agree to and we have encroached on the entire world and killed many on their properties.  maybe everyone is fed up?  Ok..i don't want IRAN to have a nuke.  but funny, the US of A is the only one in history to-date that has used one?  I don't want anyone to have a NUKE, but that's not the world will live in.  

Nick Elway's picture

I believe

I believe Iran's nuclear program is for self-defense.  No more or less a threat than North Korea.  The question for me is why all the sabre-rattling?  Why the open willingness to undertake a false flag to get it going?

I believe the plan to start a war with Iran has been in place for many years, and that the good men in our military refused to refuel Cheney's B-52 that he tried to send to Iran to get things rolling. 

I believe this article from infowars: http://www.infowars.com/let-them-eat-yellowcake-iran-gives-enemies-another-excuse-to-bomb-them/

Tyler's picture

TF is killing it today

on fire

Jimux's picture

Yes, Yes, No.

Yes,

I'm sure they'll get a few Watts out of it.

Yes,

You don't invade a country if it threatens to drop a nuke on the saudi export capacity.

No.

There is no possibility of Iran using the nukes for offensive purposes. If they were to launch a nuke at Israel, Iran would be destroyed. Period.

Ask Chirac.

seekonksteve's picture

We have no right to involve

We have no right to involve ourselves in another countries affairs.We did not stop Pakistan or  India or N Korea from their weapon programs why Iran?Ikes warning seems to have even more meaning today.If you want to destroy our economy with 300.00 a barrel oil by all means attack Iran.I don't see it happening but I wholeheartdly agree with Ron Pauls foreign policy.We would make many more friends feeding the world than try to dominate it.

FriedEggs's picture

What

about a 4th choice Turd: 

  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is the prime focus for a false flag operation? An excuse to go to War?

Answer - Yes.

.

Prediction - we are going to War - errr, we are already IN a War, it started on 9/11.

.

Fried(e)

fats's picture

what nation state doesn't want nukes?

I believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for economic, medical, and military self-defense, just like every other country that pursues nuclear power.  I do think the sense of urgency on Iran's part is a result of the latter.  

Eventually, Iran will be blamed for enough "mischief" that western nations will move past sanctions and unleash "coalition" forces on them.  I think it's clear that the mid and far east (and Russia) will reach a breaking point and push back.  We can only hope that global conflict can be avoided, but with the way nations are moving troops, equipment,  and making public statements that they are prepared for war, I would say that is an unlikely scenario.  

That being said, in the words of Mr. Ferguson, prepare accordingly.

turkeybucket's picture

Ahmadinejad is no idiot

He knows he's not safe until he has the bomb.  He might be evil enough to use it, I have no idea, but would doubt it considering how smart he plays politics. I would bet he is a great poker player.

ClinkinKY's picture

My take

I just get tired of all the posters who ascribe the "sabre rattling" to the U.S./Israel. There are any number of videos posted every day on the internet of Iranian (or other ME) mullahs, etc talking about the "Great Satan" or the annihilation of Israel as the "only" solution to world peace (accompanied by the universal application of Shariah law).

All I ask is that people take these speakers at their word and posit the implications of giving them what they want.

Turd Ferguson's picture

I'll dive right in

MODERATOR

I fear that Ahmadinejad and Khameini are, in fact, 12ers. More specifically, that they believe they can personally bring about the return of the Islamic "messiah", The Twelvth Imam.

http://www.allaboutpopularissues.org/12th-imam.htm

Of course, I have no idea whether or not this is their intention but the circumstantial evidence gives me pause. Here is Ahmadinejad in his own words:

But then there's this:

And I ask myself: If I were Netanyahu, what would I do? If there's is only a 10% chance that Iran has apocalyptic intent, do I act before it's too late? What if there's only a 1% chance? 70 years ago, there was a movement to eliminate the Jews that resulted in 6,000,000 deaths. Would I want to be blamed for the next 6,000,000 by failing to act?

I don't know. I really don't know.

zilverreiger's picture

I believe  1 & 2.Do you

I believe  1 & 2.

Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for peaceful economic and medical purposes?

Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for military self-defense purposes? (though they are not actively making a bomb right now as the international authorities have established.)

Iran has no active agressive foreign policy like the USA has. This is all spin from the evil empire that wants to keep the petro dollar and energy security. Should a military conflict ensue I hope they will take the USA with them into hell.

mjb99na's picture

Ahmadinejad wants to be attacked (and here's why)

1) Iran has a growing, young, democratic movement that threatens Ahmadinejad's hold on power

2) Ahmadinejad is no dummy and he knows that building a weaponized nuke is a sure-fire way to get Iran attacked (he will absolutely not use it, if they ever get a truly operational nuke, which is unlikely)

3) Isreal is the most likely candidate to first-strike Iran

4) Iran enjoys a "9/11" moment of national unity and solidifies Ahmadinejad's power for at least another 10 years

5) US will back Isreal, preventing a total response by Iran against Isreal

6) Iran does not want total war, Ahmadinejad knows he will lose.  Ahmadinejad asks for China and Russia help.

7) China and/or Russia will use the political cover for any number of things, including potentially making Iran a puppet like North Korea.

8) USA does not have the military capability, political will, or money to fight Iran, China and Russia

9) China and Russia emerge as the stronger world players

10) USA is diminished in world affairs

11) Dollar loses appeal as world reserve currency as Chinese Yuan becomes far more attractive considering China's newfound stranglehold on oil production vis a vis Iran

12) Dollar slide becomes profound + oil prices become unaffordable

13) Amplifies current domestic issues in USA / USA recession/depression deepens

14) Deficit increases / Debt increases even faster than currently projected // unemployment up // gdp down // etc etc

14b)  Don't forget that behind all of this you still have Greece/PIIGS/EU mess going on, which prevents any response whatsoever by NATO/EU, who are embroiled in their own problems

15) SHTF

Quick final edit:  Do not underestimate Ahmadinejad as being crazy.  He's not.  He is a powerful politician, and all who possess power desire to keep it.  Also keep in mind that he has to keep Ali Khamenei just happy enough not to publicly denounce him, but impotent enough not to stop him.  An Iranian 9/11 is a sure fire way to do all of the above, especially when it's Isreal.

ClinkinKY's picture

@ Turd--I'll Dive Right In

My concerns too.

Horatio's picture

Do you believe that Iran's

  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for peaceful economic and medical purposes?

No, there would have been many ways for them to achieve this without their current international problems.

  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for military self-defense purposes?

Only as a best case scenario, this program is intended as an umbrella under which they can be aggressive using terroristic methods.

It can also be a means of regime protection.   No country will step in when they crush internal dissent.

  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for hostile, aggressive purposes?

I would put the odds of them intending to use it as an direct offensive weapon as being less as them using  it defensively.  However, I believe that their weapons will be used.  

1) Their desire to destroy Israel must be taken at face value

2) Their aggressive religious convictions must be taken at face value.

3) The odds of weapons being used by the state, or lost to terrorist organizations in a national governmental collapse I believe is high.  I believe that there government will collapse at some point.

There are no good options, but with time, the options and outcomes get worse.

If Israel is going to attack, we better help them to make sure it is done completely.

ClinkinKY's picture

@ zilverreiger

Sorry, it has to be said.

zilverreiger, your anti-American hatred goes beyond  distaste for the American political system (which most of the posters here would agree with) but seems to include Americans, in general.

I recently decided to visit ZeroHedge, for the first time in months, and the first story posted was about the U.S. sending a third carrier to the Persian Gulf. The FIRST comment to this story was:
tamtInCruw83ZnCBfNwsvcigAi0tnBpAjMAMnVhG
bring it on losers, america is toast and the world knows it
zilverreiger

Other posts (here)  by you have demonstrated your disdain (hatred?) for anything American. It seems that the only thing you “approve of” is American websites dealing with PMs, where you can post your anti-American diatribes.

Your “overall” hatred of ANYTHING American would hold more credence if you could post more Dutch contributions to the world, in comparison to American contributions (even given their failings).

Please don’t think I’m “stalking” you, as this was my first, and last, visit to ZeroHedge in months and the mere fact that it was your comment that I saw first was enough to convince me that I’m not missing anything by not visiting there more often.

How much longer will it be before we can expect to see you signing off, “Allahu Akbar” in your criticism of the “Great Satan” America?
 

EagleDave's picture

What Country DOESN'T Want a Nuke?

I lean towards something between Option #2 and Option #3. Why not develop a nuclear power industry with the side benefit of dabbling with some sort of nuclear weapon?

Israel has nukes.
Pakistan has nukes.
India has nukes.

Who doesn't want a nuke? If Iran is going to be a legitimate threat to Israel it needs a nuke since Israel can always play the trump card of nuking an enemy if it is successfully threatened by conventional war and/or terror attacks.

If I were Iran I would develop a nuke to increase my prestige in the region, threaten Israel, increase ties with my big boy friends China and Russia. Joining the nuclear camp puts Iran in another league above Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and other regional rivals/friends.

With all that said, I don't necessarily buy into the Mahdi rhetoric that Iran will unilaterally launch a nuke at Israel and wipe it off the map. It sounds good to some people, but I think it's just to scare Israel and excite the worldwide base of people that would love to see it actually happen.

Turd Ferguson's picture

and then there's this

MODERATOR

images_0.jpg

Are these bases offensive or defensive? Depends on whom you ask, I guess.

FriedEggs's picture

"THREE WORLD WARS" It's time

"THREE WORLD WARS"

It's time to remember that "Islamists" like Ayatollah Khameini and the Zionists are actually Masonic brothers. They form two arms of a pincer designed to throw the world into chaos, out of which will emerge Illuminati tyranny.
.

They own both sides - to control the outcome.

.

The Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution said the regional uprisings will bring about decline and isolation for the Zionist regime and stressed:

"One of the outcomes of these movements is decline and isolation for the Zionist regime, which is very important, because the Zionist regime is truly a cancerous tumor in the region and it must be, and will be, cut off."

Saying the "Zionist regime" is a cancerous tumor is hardly the same as the  advocating preemptive attacks and the genocide of every Jew on earth.
It sounds like regime change to me. Even Israelis would welcome that.

But they and their many proxies want you to believe the worst, because they want to sucker the US into another self-destructive world war. Russia, China and even Pakistan have said they will support Iran.

BTW, why is it OK for Pakistan to have nuclear weapons but not Iran? Why is it OK for Israel to have more than 200 nuclear warheads? But we know,  WMD's are just an excuse for aggression and war. Iraq proved that. 
 

http://www.henrymakow.com/zionists_want_another_world_wa.html.

.

Fried(e)

 

WineGuy's picture

It's not Iran

that's the problem it's the USA! This is not meant to be disrespectful to the fine Americans on this thread but the world has had enough of the USA. It's nothing but a school yard bully! The foreign policy of the USA has got to change. I could go on and on but my blood pressure will just go through the roof so I better quit now.

Baxter Bentley's picture

Do you believe that Iran's

Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for peaceful economic and medical purposes?

No.

Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for military self-defense purposes?

Yes.

Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for hostile, aggressive purposes?

No. It's simply leverage for them. A bargaining chip to be taken seriously in the international military circus.

Do I care if Iran gets nuclear weapons? Not one bit... If they want to spend the money to develop a nuclear arsenal, then let them. However, if they get them and use them in an act of hostility or aggression, then let all the nations of the world rise up and reduce their nation to rubble. Honestly, I really cannot believe the hubris of any nation telling another what they can or cannot do within the confines of their borders. Iran is a country run by nutjobs, but what nation these days isn't?

zilverreiger's picture

@ClinkinKY

I noticed your blind trust in your own nations actions also. On zero hedge I'm a little extra unnuanced, because their postings are often  slanderously warmongering in nature themselves.  You're all hopelessly being duped, and I will cry it out every time I see it.

Be Prepared's picture

Iran's Nuclear Program...

  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for peaceful economic and medical purposes?
    Yes and No.... I know that sounds wishy washy but the truth is that I do believe that Iran understands that they, themselves, need an alternate form of power as their oil may run dry leaving them few economic choices unless they diversify.  However, I also believe they are using this move as an attempt to arm themselves with nuclear devices.  The problem I have, like most of us, is the ideological basis of the government in the hands of a non-secular body and being driven by fanatical religious beliefs may lead them to rash movements.  Islam, by itself, isn't the problem, but how the books of Shia are being twisted makes me concerned about how they will make the decision to deploy and, ultimately, use them.
  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for military self-defense purposes?
    A Nuclear Program, with today's technological improvements in bomb efficacy, is no longer a self-defense weapon or even an offensive weapon.  A full weaponized nuclear bomb in a world killer.... plain and simple.  It's use is so toxic and noxious to the environment that it would containment the area on a permanent basis.  We are talking about half-lives in the thousands of years here.  We are already worried about how to store spent nuclear rods that will require hundreds of generations to manage.  How will the use of this type of weapon serve any of us regardless of whose hands it is in?  Since they are in existence, I don't want them in the hands of nation state that believes the complete annihilation of your enemy is the only path to be right with the Creator.
  • Do you believe that Iran's "nuclear program" is for hostile, aggressive purposes?
    You can almost guess Iran's justification for this program.... We will get electrical power for our people, but we will be able to show Israel that we can wipe them off the face of the world.  The intense indoctrination of their people over the last 30 years makes me worried about how they would make the decision to "push" the button.  The holding of a "nuclear" weapon and its use has consequences for all nations..... it is no longer about individual nation sovereignty.
ClinkinKY's picture

@ zilverreiger

No, my "blind trust" is in Americans, not the American system. There is a difference.

MisesFan's picture

Self-Defense.....

If Israel can possess an arsenal of nukes (which is a direct threat to Iran), who are we to say that Iran can not.

If Israel truly wanted peace, why dont they eliminate their nuclear arsenal?  It is because Israel is not interested in peace.

david's picture

Turd, Iran's nuclear program

Turd, Iran's nuclear program started before the revolution in 1979. Before 1979 the secular regime in Iran wanted a nuclear bomb to control the region and oil producing countries and to turn to a more powerful country but after the revolution the religious regime began its work by the motto of conquering the Israel and fighting  the west and trying to make the Muslims control the world but soon the leader found out that he cant do what he wanted. But continued the mottos without really trying to do anything.

From the other hand the people in Iran got tired of the regime and wanted a democracy and social freedom and better relation with west  and sought the west to change the regime in Iran. the next leader (he is the leader now) in Iran wanted  a nuclear bomb to stop the united states from attacking Iran and changing the regime but at the same time he wanted to make a deal with the united states to give the leader in Iran assurance that the US wont try to change the regime.

there was no assurance and considering what happened to Saddam and Gaddafi the leader in Iran made sure that his only option is completing the project of the nuclear bomb. Iran cant use that against the USA but can use it against Israel. So if Iran is attacked, Iran will use all options but if Iran is not attacked Iran will turn to North Korea .

I am an Iranian by the way and excuse me for my poor English and i am sorry for myself since i cant decide for my future and one person in Iran plays with lives of 75 millions to continue his kingdom.

Edward G's picture

"Iranian" terror attack here in Bangkok

...apparently....a bungled job thankfully...more info required.....

Great to hear about expansion of this place TF, so far so good, but God/Allah heaven only knows how you will moderate folks....

I have friends in Iran and had a close schoolfriend from there....first it's worth saying that the long-chanted platitude 'death to youknowwho' is a play to the gallery of '79ers still dominant there, but is just par for the political course, like a tory mp wannabe in the uk has to go and have 'rubber chicken' lunches with ladies in tweed and impossible nerdy-looking men and chant the usual creed to the faithful.....my boy of course is one of those led-zep-loving rebs....

Amazing so few people are aware of the Petrodollar narrative behind all this.... and I'll leave others to untangle all the double standards and fearmongering going on....('Won't get fooled again?????")

I will say on a technical point that places do get 'wiped off the map' in all sorts of ways (e.g. USSR or ceylon becoming sri lanka) without actually literally being disappeared...

as for your questions, i spose i'll go for DEfense...if it was me I would try and get folks to believe i've got nukes when i haven't as i am a bit stingy, and would never use them anyway....but they are NOT lunatics(why do Hugo Chavez, India, Russia,China wish to conduct normal business?)  

It is often he who smelt it dealt it and he who denied it supplied it...

peace to all everyday peace-loving folks, blessed are the peacemakers,

Have to add about Santa.....it's easy to imagine events getting ahead of schedule a little in these times, even though the dance has to play itself out......he has maybe given a conservative timeframe......but i must say his articulation of all the factors here shows he is right on the ball more so than many many commentators, he's not just talking his book, he's walking it.

be nice everyone, bless TF and love to the Mods xxxx

ClinkinKY's picture

To Lighten The Mood

mrzFNL021512_color.jpg.cms

Fr. Bill's picture

Diving In ...

I'm a "yes" on No. Three: the nuclear program is for offensive purposes.  I believe this because:

1.  It's what Iran's leadership says it wishes to do with its nukes (i.e. get rid of Israel, and I mean Really Get Rid of It), and

2.  The history of Iran ever since the demise of the Shah confirms that the anti-Israeli, anti-American political agenda in Iran advances as far as it is able to advance at any given time.  

3.  Acquiring deliverable nukes would vastly enhance the demonstrated, validated Iranian foreign policy in (2) above.

QED

Are America's interests at stake here?  Most certainly, because of oil.  Were we self-reliant for the energy to make our economy run (and that has always been possible, dontcha know; even more so in the past 20 years!), our interests in the Middle East would be far different than they are now.

But, there you are...we're dependent on Middle Eastern oil.  So, it matters a LOT to us if a nuclear Iran can achieve military/political hegemony in the Middle East.  In other words, to control the flow of oil from Iraq, Saudi, Yemen, etc. and to bring oil-dependent Western economies to their knees.

By the way, that oil dependence makes a nuclear retaliation against Iran very dicey, since if the Middle East glows at night, the oil production facilities go offline for generations.

Maryann's picture

TF.....yes

On the intent of the 12ers...yes.  I think this is about good and evil  (not that any of us are perfect or don't make mistakes that hurt others, or have selfish ambitions) .  Thank you for tackling this incredibly difficult topic.  

ClinkinKY's picture

@ MisesFan --Self-defense

Ever seen a map of the ME comparing size of countries?

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