More War In the Works

2006 is a dangerous year for Americans. The Bill of Rights and Americans’ civil liberties are being sacrificed on the altar of unaccountable executive power, as is the separation of powers, the foundation of our constitutional system.

The Supreme Court is being packed with a majority that favors more expansive executive rule.

The economy is in danger, as the real estate boom unwinds and reduces the asset base of consumer demand.

Political money scandals and evidence of Republican vote fraud in the 2004 presidential election threaten to undermine confidence in American democracy, which President Bush is committed to exporting by force of arms to the world.

The Republican plan for amnesty for millions of illegal aliens looms as the final blow to U.S. borders and the concept of U.S. citizenship.

Perhaps the greatest threat of all is Israel’s determination to attack Iran, either directly or indirectly through its surrogate, the Bush administration.

We are witnessing the same drumbeat against Iranian weapons of mass destruction as we witnessed in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq. Fox "News," which in fact is the most thorough-going dispenser of war propaganda since the Nazi Third Reich, provides a parade of bought-and-paid-for-consultants who assure credulous audiences that Osama bin Laden has forged an alliance with Iran, which will soon be providing al-Qaida with nuclear weapons.

Even the Bush administration’s chief warmonger, Vice President Dick Cheney, found the Fox "News" charges too absurd to be useful propaganda. Cheney disavowed close relations between al-Qaida Sunnis and Iranian Shi’ites: "There’s not a natural fit there."

The New York Times prostituted itself by permitting Judith Miller to use the newspaper as a tool for neoconservative war propaganda against Iraq. The Times prostituted itself a second time by withholding for an entire year the information that President Bush was illegally spying on Americans in violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and a third time by not reporting Al Gore’s challenge to the Bush administration’s criminal behavior. Now the Times is prostituting itself a fourth time in serving as a Bush administration propaganda organ against Iran.

Unlike Israel, which does have nuclear weapons, Iran is a signatory to the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty. Under the treaty, countries are permitted nuclear energy. Inspections make certain no weapons are produced. Iran agrees to abide by the treaty and to have the inspections.

Israel, however, and its neocon allies in the Bush administration claim without any evidence that Iran is making a bomb. The nuclear inspectors find no evidence of a weapons program. Israel and its neocon allies reply that once Iran has the know-how for nuclear power, it will be able to manufacture the material from which to make a bomb — therefore, Iran must not be permitted its rights under the non-proliferation treaty. Since Iran refuses to give up its treaty rights to develop nuclear energy, Israel and the neocons maintain that Iran’s facilities must be bombed and destroyed.

Americans will pay a heavy price for Israeli paranoia.

The entire world knows that Israel cannot bomb Iran without U.S. weapons and cooperation.

A U.S. attack on Iran would be another instance of naked American aggression against a Muslim country. Aggression is a war crime under the Nuremberg standard established by the United States. Such an attack would further isolate the United States as a rogue country. It would further inflame the Muslim world against the United States and Israel, making any settlement of the Palestinian issue emotionally impossible for Muslims.

If tactical nuclear weapons are used in the bombing of Iran, as the neoconservatives advocate, America will be reviled throughout the world. Americans will never recover from the burden of shame and war crimes inflicted upon them by the Bush administration.

An attack on Iran could be the death knell for our troops in Iraq and for our puppets in Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. The majority Iraqi Shi’ites have tolerated the U.S. occupation because the majority Shi’ites are the gainers from the U.S. insistence on majority rule. The Iraqi Shi’ites are allied with Shi’ite Iran. They will recognize an attack on Iran as a blow struck against Shi’ite power. If the Iraqi Shi’ites turn on our troops, U.S. casualties will soar.

The best way to ensure U.S. defeat in Iraq is to attack Iran.

Would Bush and the neocons accept embarrassing defeat, or would they escalate the conflict?

Would a sane government pursue a policy that has no favorable outcome?

Some analysts believe that Russia and China will protect their Iranian energy and trade agreements by vetoing U.N. sanctions that the Bush administration seeks as a pretext for its aggression. These two powers, however, might abstain, as it is in their interest to let Bush dig a deeper hole for the United States. Disruption of Iranian oil supplies increases Europe’s energy dependence on Russia and serves to further weaken U.S. influence in Europe.

The American people need to understand that with its massive budget and trade deficits, the United States is able to go to war only because the Chinese, Japanese, Europeans and oil-producing countries finance Bush’s war by purchasing U.S. debt and holding dollar-denominated assets. Once Bush has the United States overextended, it will be the end of the American superpower if one of our bankers decides to rein in the rogue American state by dumping dollar holdings.

Indeed, a number of thinkers (William Clark and Krassimir Petrov, for example) have concluded that the reason that the Pentagon has plans to attack Iran is Iran’s intention to establish an international oil exchange in which anyone can buy or sell oil in any currency.

Such an exchange, it is argued, would spell the dollar’s death as the currency in which oil is billed. With countries no longer needing dollars in order to pay their oil bills, the demand for dollars and dollar-denominated assets would decline. The dollar would further depreciate, bringing crisis to import-dependent America.

As Bush’s ill-fated adventure in Iraq has proved, the United States is not the superpower it believed itself to be. If the United States wishes to retain a leadership position, it must abruptly change course. The massive budget and trade deficits must be immediately curtailed before the currency is destroyed, and the United States must pursue peace instead of war in the Middle East.

The United States breeds terrorism by its 60-year-old policy of interfering in the internal affairs of Muslim lands and ruling them through surrogates. The United States assaults Muslim sensitivities with the export of "American culture," a euphemism for sexual promiscuity. The United States creates enormous animosity by appearing to exploit Muslim oil wealth and by turning a blind eye while Israel expropriates the West Bank.

Doesn’t it make more sense to mend our ill-considered ways than to go to war against Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Syria and who else? Is there no one in the Republican or Democratic parties who is capable of intelligent leadership? How many more Americans and Muslims are going to pay for Bush’s insane policy with their lives, arms, legs and eyes? How stupid are the American people?