Skip to comments.Iran's Khamenei and Israel's Casus Belli
Posted on 08/19/2012 10:52:08 PM PDT by Kaslin
Editor's Note: This column was co-authored by Bob Morrison.
There are precedents for what Iran's "Supreme Leader" Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has just done. Khamenei is the top in Tehran who is threatening to wipe Israel off the map. Khamenei said "the fake Zionist (regime) will disappear from the landscape of geography. He said this to a meeting of Iran-Iraq war veterans. That 1980s war claimed millions of lives and was fought for what? Both Saddam Hussein of Iraq and the mullahs of Iran showed a complete disregard for human lives in that pointless brutal and inconclusive decade-long struggle.
One of the most horrific aspects to that war were the little plastic keys the clerics gave to thousands of Iranian boys as young as 10. These keys on necklaces would, they told those doomed lads, open up the gates of Paradise to them. Then they sent these children to clear Iraqi minefields--by marching right through them. What else do we need to know about the inhumanity of this regime? These are the mullahs who invented suicide bombing. They sent a Hezbollah driver and truck into the midst of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut, detonating a blast that killed the driver and 241 U.S. Marines and Navy Corpsmen in 1983.
Now, Khamenei is once again making threats of annihilation against Israel. These threats are eerily echoing those made by Egyptian dictator Gamal Abdel Nasser in the days that led up to the 1967 Mideast War. Nasser kicked UN truce supervisors out of the Sinai desert, thus making possible a sneak attack on Israel. He then proceeded to close off the Gulf of Aqaba, preventing Israel from using the port of Eilat. He knew the risk he was taking in thus provoking war with Israel. He wanted that war.Nasser said: We knew that by closing the Gulf of Aqaba it might mean war with Israel. [If war comes] it will be total and the objective will be to destroy Israel. (Washington Post, May 27, 1967)
Nasser sought to unite all the Arabs, not behind Islam, for he was a secular dictator, an "Arab socialist," bent on creating pan-Arab unity by demonizing the Jews. He blamed the Jews of Israel for the backwardness and poverty of people on the "Arab street." It is the oldest of dictators' ploys. If your corrupt and debilitating regimes produce dangerous pressures from below, blame it all on the Jews.
Nasser took to the radio and called upon all Arabs to "drive the Jews into the sea." Israel was not eager for war, especially not a war on four fronts. Israel in 1967 was just nine miles wide at the widest point. The Jewish state was dangerously exposed to invasion.
And, too, there were the Soviets to consider. The Lyndon Johnson administration was then thoroughly bogged down in a war in Vietnam. They worried that an Israeli strike against threatening Arab regimes might escalate into World War III, with the USSR intervening to support its Arab clients in the region. There was no support from LBJ's White House for an Israeli armed response to the murderous threats coming from Arab capital. Then, as now, the word from the politically worried administration in Washington to the Israelis was: cool it.
Easy for you to say, Mr. Johnson. Easy for you, too, Mr. Obama.
The Israelis have patiently endured threat after threat of being wiped out by eliminationist neighbors. They have warned the UN, the world community, and especially the Obama administration that there is a limit to their endurance.
The Obama administration's response has been to trumpet the success of its latest round of economic sanctions against the Tehran regime. Yes, sanctions might indeed "bite," they may have a "crippling" effect on the Iranian economy. But all those sanctions do is make the wretched people of Iran more wretched. And, in a perverse way, serve to prop up the mullahs regime. They can blame all their people's misery on the U.S. sanctions and say it's all the fault of the Great Satan.
Remember those plastic keys. The kind of men who would send children to their deaths are not the kind of people who care about the suffering they cause. Sanctions may bite, but they don't bite the mullahs.
Israel often appears in the world press as a naysayer. When the doves of the UN are cooing, when there are handshakes on the South Lawn of the White House, when the Spirit of Camp David Accords wafts gently in the breeze, hard-headed Israeli analysts question whether these moves have really defanged terrorists or just given them some dental hygiene.
Prime Minister Menachem Begin was once confronted in Washington by a public relations executive who appealed to him to try to put the Israeli case in more positive terms. "You always seem to be saying NO," the friendly critic charged, "please try to put the case for Israel in more positive terms. It means a lot in public relations, I can assure you."
The Prime Minister responded with a courtly bow. He thanked the executive for his support for the Jewish state. He said he and his colleagues in the Knesset--the elected Knesset, he emphasized--would consider ways to be more positive.
"But, Mr. Public Relations executive, I hope you will grant me this: In our part of the world, there are certain precedents for Thou Shalt Not."
There are indeed certain precedents for Thou Shalt Not. Including Thou Shalt Not Murder. And an Iranian cleric who daily incites his captive people to slaughter the Israelis has violated that ancient Thou Shalt Not.
That is why the Israelis now have their Casus Belli, their just cause for war. If they strike Iran's still-spinning centrifuges and stop their headlong quest for atomic weapons, they will be well justified.
Americans should thank, not criticize, Israel if Israelis defend themselves. They'll be defending us, too. They may be fighting by themselves alone, but they do not fight for themselves alone.
Nice article. Iran still needs to go, but we cannot underestimate their desire to constantly spin reality to the Iranian masses. They make Baghdad Bob look like a carnival barker.
In 1988, I was in the region as a sailor on board the USS Enterprise. We attacked Iran in operation Praying Mantis (probably the last time the US fired a shot directly at Iran). At the time we were told it was billed as the largest naval conflict since WWII.
There are several other historical anecdotes I would review if I were in a battle planning role today. Operation Earnest Will, Operation Praying Mantis, the Vincennes incident where the guided missile cruiser shot down an Iranian civilian airliner, and then the car-bombing of the Vincenne’s captain’s wife’s car sometime after all that.
That chain of events should give you some insight into the depravity of this regime...and its also about 25 year old information.
I learned something about negotiation as an 18 yr old there. No matter how much you disrespect your opponent, give them a plausible out. They will blame the great Satan, but they have nothing else to do but blame us. In that process, they will also do all they can, in totally unexpected ways to destroy our reputation in the eyes of the world.
When I was in, we were told the civilian airliner downed by the Vincennes was filled with dead people. They were able to recover the bodies fairly quickly (too quickly). Many were too intact for the incident, and had what appeared to be bullet holes in their corpses. Some were political opponents of the regime.
This is all hearsay, and I have no proof of this, but the sailors on the Vincennes said they thought there was a threat. They said they thought it was a combat plane with an IFF Transponder from an old F4, and that’s why they fired after several warning transmissions which went unheeded. Apparently this has been disproven according to an investigation, but that was the ‘scuttlebutt’ at the time.
The second thing that struck me was the ability to retaliate on our soil. The WTC bombing in 1993 was the first middle eastern terrorist attack in the US? I doubt it. Check out that car bombing of the captain’s wife’s car in San Diego. Hezbollah or someone got into the country then, and blew up her car. Its pretty obvious, but didn’t make the news.
What will happen if we attack Iran? We don’t have much choice at this point, but we better think through how we’re going to shut down the asymmetric retaliation they’re undoubtedly planning - and have threatened. We’ll spawn 1000 bin laden wannabes if we’re not careful.
I believe we need to have a very tight program that has three planks -1.) Absolute destruction of their military, political leadership, and command and control infrastructure - especially their auxiliary proxies like Hezbollah and other quasi-terrorist groups - that’s actually the easiest part of the campaign, bunkers and more advanced anti-ship and anti-aircraft missile systems notwithstanding.
2.) An effective strategy for regime change in Iran. We blew it a few years back with no support for the rioting youth, and again we missed an opportunity with the last election turmoil. We need to have those leaders identified, so at the appointed time, they step in to finger the regime loyalists. The Iranian people are quite educated, and I believe only a small minority constitute the religiously rabid militants. The help of these resistance partisans would be invaluable.
3.) We need to have a tightly integrated anti-terrorism campaign around the world (but especially covering domestic risks in the US). We should already have targets within the Iranian leadership suspected of promoting global hostilities, as well as known operatives, extended contacts and suspected sleeper cells globally - and be in a position to “roll up” those organizations simultaneous to the onset of airstrikes on the nuclear facilities.
That is what would work and just “delete” the Iranian regime in one fell swoop.
Just my $0.02
That is some damn excellent background AZ-GS, and if I might offer a few more historical details left out of the article, not well known to most people:
In the Spring of 1980, Zbigniew Brzezinski (Carter’s National Security Adviser at the time) went to Amman Jordan where he met with representatives of Saddam’s regime (some say he met with Saddam himself, that remains unconfirmed), where he conveyed the views of the Carter Administration that if Iraq were to pursue territorial disputes with Iran via annexation and military action, that Washington wouldn’t exactly be heartbroken. This was believed to be a way of applying additional pressure on Iran, still holding our hostages in our embassy in Tehran. THIS is when the U.S. began it’s tilt to Iraq, the lies of liberals notwithstanding when they trot out those pictures of Rumsfeld meeting with Saddam, etc.
Anyhow, the result of that meeting between Saddam’s people and Brzezinski? Iraq attacked Iran, began that long eight year war, with the countless deaths and casualties, including those of the children pressed into service as human mine sweepers by the Assahollah Khomeini. Another ‘fun fact to share and tell’ is that the premiere trainer, instructor and organizer of the Basiji (the kids with the aforementioned little plastic keys) was none other than Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the current sockpuppet of Khamenei and the rest of the mad mullahs.
If there were any real justice in this world, both Carter and Brzezinski would have been charged with crimes against humanity and genocide for their role in instigating the carnage of the Iraq-Iran War.
Now as for the topic of regime change, I have long been an advocate for adding the city of Qom (more or less Khomeini’s hometown) to Hiroshima and Nagasaki in the history books, which would complete a perfect American Trifecta, however it would take a President with forged steel balls like Harry Truman to give the order for that task, although those little Persian pricks need a nuclear smackdown in the same way the Japanese needed to be nuked to snap them out of their militarist obsessions.
The only Western leader on the scene right now that I believe would have the guts to nuke Iran would be the one and only Bibi Netanyahu, and just as Israel did the world a public service when they took out Saddam’s reactor at Osirak, they would likewise be cleaning out the filthy Iranian sewer because the rest of the world hasn’t the appetite for it.
“He said this to a meeting of Iran-Iraq war veterans”
Ha. War veterans who were supplied guns & ammunition by Israel.