With a military establishment equipped and funded to higher levels than the next dozen powers or so in the world, the US is far from becoming militarily weak, except if we manage to go bankrupt from profligate use of it for minimal national benefit.
Odd - on the issue of alarm over Iranian nukes, for example, Peres http://www.jpost.com/IranianThreat/News/Article.aspx?id=251066 and van Creveld,
http://www.forward.com/articles/11673/ and a fomer USCC commander sound a lot like Ron Paul, and for that matter, so does the current Israeli PM Netanyahu; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51-KA-Nc3_k
Of course, they could be wrong... (and many of the reader feedback comments to the Peres article say as much, in emphatic language). But the Iranian threat to the Gulf of Hormuz http://gazday.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=953:iran-and-the-strait-of-hormuz-stratfor-commentary-&catid=1:latestnews&Itemid=111 still seems to be a much more credible “nuclear option” in the event of a military operation against Iran than their precarious and oft-delayed nuclear weapons (and delivery systems) development project. Perhaps the fate of Libya’s former dictator (having apparently abandoned his nuclear ambitions and been rewarded with a US/NATO-backed insurrection that took him and his ruling faction out, to be replaced by a coalition of Sunni Islamic radicals) has heightened the Iranian mullah-state’s ardor for getting their own nuke - - but maybe the rest of us can put this lower on the ranking of ‘serious threats’? As the reviews of his book on nuclear proliferation note, van Creveld doesn’t let us off the hook on the possibility of nuke-based attacks from ‘somewhere’, but his case there has more to do with the erosion of the control mechanisms of developed states, as described in his “Rise and Decline of the State” : http://www.amazon.com/Rise-Decline-State-Martin-Creveld/dp/052165629X than the peculiarities of the apocalyptic outlooks of certain factions in the fractious and unstable Iranian polity.
‘Speculation of Israel’s nuclear arms deters Iran’
By GREER FAY CASHMAN AND JPOST.COM STAFF
12/27/2011 10:54 http://www.jpost.com/IranianThreat/News/Article.aspx?id=251066
President Peres says that mystery, rumors surrounding Dimona nuclear facility serve as a powerful deterrent.
The World Can Live With a Nuclear Iran
Opinion By Martin van Creveld
Published September 24, 2007, issue of September 28, 2007.
Since 1945 hardly one year has gone by in which some voices mainly American ones concerned about preserving Washingtons monopoly over nuclear weapons to the greatest extent possible did not decry the terrible consequences that would follow if additional countries went nuclear. So far, not one of those warnings has come true. To the contrary: in every place where nuclear weapons were introduced, large-scale wars between their owners have disappeared.
General John Abizaid, the former commander of United States Central Command, is only the latest in a long list of experts to argue that the world can live with a nuclear Iran. Their views deserve to be carefully considered, lest Ahmadinejads fear-driven posturing cause anybody to do something stupid.
Nuclear Proliferation and the Future of Conflict [Hardcover]
Martin Van Creveld (Author)
From Publishers Weekly
Though the possibility of nuclear confrontation between superpowers has greatly diminished since the end of the Cold War, the possession of nuclear weapons by states whose conflicts are unresolved could turn out to be equally threatening, notes Van Creveld ( The Transformation of War ). He here considers the likelihood of conflict between North and South Korea, China and Taiwan, China and India, India and Pakistan, Israel and the Arab states, as well as the nuclear status of other countries currently developing the scientific, technological and industrial infrastructure that would enable them to build weapons of mass destruction. Van Creveld begins this academic study by describing the basic characteristics of large-scale warfare as it evolved before the introduction of nuclear weapons and the effect of the latter on both the countries that possess them and on those countries threatened by them. Finally, he assesses the impact of nuclear proliferation on the future of war itself, including the configuration of the armies that would be prepared to wage it. For specialists.
From Kirkus Reviews
A somewhat reassuring audit of the residual threat posed by nuclear weapons, from a military analyst whose previous predictions have proved chillingly prescient. With defense budgets in both the US and the erstwhile USSR in full retreat, van Creveld (History/Hebrew University, Jersusalem; The Transformation of War, 1991, etc.) focuses on the state of the atomic-arms art in a clutch of less-developed countries—China, India, Iraq, Israel, Pakistan, etc. Among other matters, his informed survey considers the impact of strategic circumstances on national nuclear policies, and provides estimates of each country’s atomic inventories. For various reasons, van Creveld concludes that the use of A-bombs or their tactical equivalents by Third World nations is effectively foreclosed. In the case of Pakistan, for instance, the author contends that the development of a nuclear arsenal has made its rulers ``simultaneously more confident of themselves and less adventurous.’’ Which is not to say that van Creveld believes the West to be home free. Indeed, he reiterates previous warnings as to the faltering capacity of even modern industrial powers to monopolize violence, let alone combat or contain terrorism, grass-roots insurgencies, and allied belligerencies. For the time being, however, van Creveld doesn’t see any danger of nuclear holocaust at the hands of the less- developed nations. A perceptive study that affords a measure of cold comfort on the score of deterrence.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."